Papelbon files grievance against Nats over pay

WASHINGTON — Jonathan Papelbon, the closer for the Washington Nationals, filed a grievance against the Nats over his four-game suspension for a dugout fight with Bryce Harper.

Multiple Major League Baseball sources tell the grievance is for failing to pay his salary during those games at the end of the 2015 season.

Papelbon contends there is no precedent for having his salary withdrawn for a team-issued suspension, reports.

The fight with Harper occurred Sept. 27 after Harper’s flyout in the eighth inning against the Philadelphia Phillies. The Nats would lose to the Phillies, 12-5.

When Harper returned to the dugout, he and Papelbon exchanged words. The argument escalated, and Papelbon reached out with his left hand and grabbed Harper by the throat.

Papelbon then shoved the outfielder toward the bench with both hands, before teammates pulled the pair apart.

“The behavior exhibited by Papelbon is not acceptable,” Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo said in a statement at the time. “That is not at all in line with the way our players are expected to conduct themselves, and the Nationals organization will not tolerate it in any way.”

No date for a hearing on Papelbon’s grievance has been set.

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