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Harper's actions irk Guillen

The SportsXchange

Miami Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen spent time yelling at Washington Nationals' rookie Bryce Harper in the fourth inning on Sunday, and it turned out it was about pine tar on Harper's bat.

Apparently Guillen complained that Harper had too much pine tar on his bat during his first at-bat. In his second at-bat Harper used a bat that did not have as much pine tar and held it out to show Guillen while smiling.

Guillen thought the young Harper was showing him up, and Guillen started yelling at him across the diamond while holding a bat and mimicking the way Harper had showed it to him.

Asked what he yelled at Harper, Guillen told the Miami Herald, "Nothing. I was just telling him how cute he was."

Guillen, of course, said more than that.

"I could have said a lot of [expletive] about this kid," Guillen told reporters. "I've been praising this kid like every day. The last three times they asked me about him, the only thing I said was he's a great player. What he did [today] was unprofessional."

Harper said wasn't bothered by Guillen's actions.

"He battles for his team, and that's the type of manager Ozzie is," Harper said, according to the Herald. "He's a great manager to play for. He's going to battle for you, no matter what. That's a manager you want to play for."

There were two perspectives on the issue, of course.

Marlins left fielder Logan Morrison said Guillen told Nationals third base coach Bo Porter during Harper's first at-bat that Harper had too much pine tar on his bat.

"Ozzie did it the right way and then Harper came up the next time and pointed his bat at Ozzie. It was kind of showing him up," Morrison told the Herald. "He did him a favor by not going out there and telling him his pine tar was too high to the umpire. I don't know if it's an ejection. He did it in a way that isn't showing him up and Harper then showed him up was kind of a slap in the face."

Nationals manager Davey Johnson had a different point of view.

"Ozzie had complained that the pine tar was too high up on Harper's bat," Johnson explained. "So we changed it. Then he was still chirping about it. It got on the umpire's nerves. It got on my nerves. He was trying to intimidate my player, I guess..."

Harper said he had "no clue" what Guillen was yelling about.
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