Philadelphia Phillies star Bryce Harper blew his top on Thursday and his helmet ended up in the stands.
Harper exited Thursday's matchup against the Pittsburgh Pirates early after he was ejected for arguing a questionable call on a check swing.
With the game tied 1-1 in the bottom of the third inning, Harper appeared to check his swing on a low slider from Pirates pitcher Luis Ortiz that would have been ball four. Third base umpire Angel Hernandez, however, said that Harper went around on the pitch for his third strike, despite Harper barely lifting the bat off his shoulder.
Harper immediately charged down the third base line in disbelief. Hernandez tossed Harper out of the game, but he was just getting started. Harper got into Hernandez's face and had to be held back by Phillies third base coach Dusty Wathan.
Bryce was just ejected for being correct pic.twitter.com/NUDPF9OOOB
— NBC Sports Philadelphia (@NBCSPhilly) September 28, 2023
“Angel (Hernandez) in the middle of something again. It’s just every year. It’s the same story, same thing,” Harper said following the Phillies 3-2 loss to the Pirates. “I’m going to get fined for being right again."
Harper was adamant that call by Hernandez was "just not right."
“It's just the reaction of, I should be on first base," Harper said. "I'm grinding as hard as I can in the batter's box. These games, everyone talks about, 'oh, they don't mean that much.' But they do. For each stat, each game, winning games, a winning mentality, everything. All these at-bats matter. We don't play this game forever.”
Harper tossed his maroon helmet into the stands at Citizens Bank Park while walking back to the dugout. Ten-year-old Phillies fan Hayden Dorfman, who was wearing a Harper jersey, walked away with the souvenir.
“A bunch of dads went after it,” Dorfman later said. “My dad had a pretty good grip on it, it looked like. I tried going in, but then a lot of people started saying, ‘Give it to the kid.’ Then I got it.”
Here is Hayden Dorfman, age 10, who caught the helmet Harper threw after he was ejected tonight. A few security guards approached him and told him Harper wanted to sign it.
He said Harper is his favorite player and added that this is “the best baseball game he’s ever been to” pic.twitter.com/uq4J3Ylhwf
— Alex Coffey (@byalexcoffey) September 29, 2023
Though Harper and the Phillies lost the game, Dorfman won the night. He walked away with a piece of priceless memorabilia that Harper later autographed for him: "I’m probably going to put it in my room."
Philadelphia clinched the top wild-card seed in the National League on Tuesday.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Phillies' Bryce Harper ejected by Angel Hernandez, tosses helmet