Bryce Harper Walks Six Times, Fails to Record an Official At-Bat in Seven Plate Appearances vs. Cubs (Video)
Bryce Harper had a historic day at the plate on Sunday, and he didn’t even have to swing the bat once.
During the Nats’ 13-inning marathon against the Cubs (which Chicago won, 4-3), Harper stepped to the plate seven times, but he failed to record an official at-bat. That’s because Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon opted to walk the 23-year-old slugger six times, with his only other at-bat resulting in a hit-by-pitch.
Three of Harper’s walks were issued by 2015 NL Cy Young winner Jake Arrieta, and three of his six walks were of the intentional variety. You can watch all seven of Harper’s plate appearances in the video below:
In case you were wondering, yes, seven plate appearances without an official at-bat is an MLB record.
Why would the Cubs opt to avoid Harper in such a blatant manner? Here’s Maddon’s explanation:
#Cubs Maddon on walking Harper : “Why tempt fate? “
— Carrie Muskat (@CarrieMuskat) May 8, 2016
Hard to argue with him, especially when you consider the fact that the Cubs won the game. Don’t be surprised to see more teams adopt such a strategy when facing Harper in the future.
Hat Tip – [Cut4]