Bryce Harper was fine following a first-inning collision on Thursday with Marlins catcher Rob Brantly after he he slid into home plate in the first inning. With Harper on first base, Ryan Zimmerman drilled a double to center field and Harper raced around the bases, gaining ground on Jayson Werth rounding third.
Brantly missed the hop on the low relay from center field as Harper slid into home plate. Harper’s helmet had flown off as he neared the plate and when he slid to the left side of his face slammed into Brantly’s elbow. Harper immediately clutched his face and rolled on the ground. He was on his feet soon thereafter.
“It looked like it caught his shin guard or mask or something,” Manager Davey Johnson said. “I thought it cut him. The angle I had it looked like something real hard hit him right in the coconut. So I was coming out there and of course J-Dub said, ‘There’s not blood, you can go back.’ So we were all relieved after that.”
Harper said he clutched the left side of his face and chin to check if he was bleeding, which he didn’t. Under his beard, it was hard to tell if he had any swelling or was badly bruised. “It feels fine,” he said. “He got me in the chin. It didn’t really hurt too bad. … It feels fine.”
Jayson Werth, who watched the play from behind home plate, quipped, “The way he reacted, I thought he got shot,” he said. “I went to make sure the little guy was all right.”