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‘Traitor’ Bryce Harper slams home run – and flips bat – on return to Nationals

  • Slugger left Washington for rivals Phillies in off-season
  • Hits long home-run in 8-2 victory for new team
  • Philadelphia off to their best start in over a century

Showered by raindrops and jeers for much of the game, Bryce Harper put a bat-flipping, celebratory finish on his memorable return to Washington. Harper crushed a long home run in his final at-bat, and the Philadelphia Phillies beat the Nationals 8-2 Tuesday night for the franchise’s best start in over a century. Maikel Franco also homered for the Phillies, baseball’s only undefeated team at 4-0.

Harper left Washington after playing 927 games over seven years, participating in six All-Star Games and winning the 2015 NL MVP Award. He listened to what the Nationals had to offer, then signed a $330m, 13-year contract with the rival Phillies in February. Harper hasn’t wasted any time providing returns for the investment. He has three homers and five RBIs in four games, along with a .429 batting average. He drove in three Tuesday.

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