- Associated Press - Saturday, May 21, 2016

MIAMI (AP) - An auction house says it is offering the jersey Bryce Harper wore during his memorable dugout fight with a teammate. The Washington Nationals star says they’ve got the wrong shirt.

“That’s my MVP jersey, and I have it,” Harper said Saturday.

The website Lelands.com says it’s taking bids for the jersey the reigning NL MVP wore during his fight last September with closer Jonathan Papelbon, who drew a four-game suspension for grabbing Harper by the throat.

As of Saturday evening the website said there had been six bids, with a top offer of about $4,800.

“I hope it goes to some good,” Harper said.

The Nationals slugger said he had nothing to do with the auction, and doesn’t know who’s behind it or how Lelands obtained one of his jerseys. But he’s annoyed about the situation.

“I don’t think it’s right,” he said, speaking before the Nationals’ game at Miami.

Lelands, based in Bohemia, New York didn’t return calls from the AP seeking comment.

“Presented here is the very same home white #34 jersey Harper wore during the altercation,” the Lelands listing says.

Harper said he wore the same jersey in every game last season, and marked it with stitching near the hem.

“That way, every day that I wore my jersey, I knew that it was my jersey,” he said. “Superstitiously I wear the same one.”

Harper still has that 2015 jersey at home, he said. He said he has a new jersey this season that he also marked with stitching and wears in every game.

The team issued a statement confirming the Lelands jersey was from the game in which Harper and Papelbon quarreled.

But a person familiar with the situation said Harper often wears two jerseys over the course of a game, including his lucky one. The person discussed the matter with the AP on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation.

The person said Harper will wear two jerseys on days when one of them is being collected for authentication and distribution. But he’ll wear the jersey being authenticated in the early innings, and then switch to the lucky jersey he wears throughout the season.

That would suggest he was likely wearing his lucky jersey - the one he still has - during the fight with Papelbon, because it occurred in the eighth inning.

Nationals officials said the Lelands jersey was part of an online auction of signed jerseys from the game remembered for the Harper-Papelbon fight.

“The organization is unaware of how this item came to the Lelands auction site,” the Nationals said.

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide