Harper hits first homer at home and later crashes into outfield wall, is unhurt

Hagerstown Suns right fielder Bryce Harper crushed his first home run of the season at Municipal Stadium Thursday. It is his second home run of the year after hitting one on a road trip at Lexington last week.

Harper is batting .261 (12-for-46) in 14 games with two home runs and eight RBI. He is tied for the team lead in RBI with Blake Kelso.

The home run was another of the line drive variety. The wind was moving left to right across the field and that aided the left-handed hitters Thursday.

“Bryce worked himself a good count,” Hagerstown Suns play-by-play announcer Bryan Holland said. “It was a fast ball middle in. He turned on it and sent it into the visiting bullpen in right field.

“It wasn’t this Mark McGwire upper-deck smasher. It was a ball that was hit right on the screws. It didn’t get high off the ground. It just kept on moving into the right-center field gap and over the wall. It was very similar to the ball that he hit in Lexington.”

Later in the first game of a doubleheader, Harper had a minor collision with the outfield wall, going after a fly ball. He was down on the ground for less than a couple of minutes. He got up and stayed in the game.

According to reports from the field, it appeared he hit the side of his face and banged the back of his shoulder. Harper told the media afterwards that he was fine. The Nationals held him out of Game 2 of the doubleheader as a precaution. He is expected to return to the lineup today. Rain is in the forecast in Hagerstown.

Be sure to check out my complete radio interview with Holland Sunday at 6 p.m. on “Nats Insider” live at the Gaylord National on Sports Radio 106.7 The Fan.

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