San Francisco Giants reliever Hunter Strickland appealed the six-game suspension he received for intentionally throwing at Washington Nationals superstar Bryce Harper on Monday, but he won’t know his fate for a while yet.
Despite MLB settling Harper’s appeal of his four-game suspension on Wednesday, within 48 hours of the incident, the league won’t be hearing Strickland’s appeal until June 13, Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle reports.
Strickland is eligible to play while appealing the ban, and is with the Giants for their weekend set in Philadelphia.
But the long wait between suspension and appeal hearing ended up leaving the Giants in a weird form of roster purgatory. According to Schulman, because they didn’t know when Strickland’s appeal would be heard, the Giants had shortstop Christian Arroyo – the likeliest candidate to be optioned for a reliever in the event of Strickland’s suspension being upheld – fly cross-country from San Francisco to Philadelphia on a commercial flight Thursday night, rather than the team charter, in case he had to return to the West Coast immediately.
Strickland was handed the six-game ban after he intentionally beaned the slugger during Monday’s Giants-Nationals game at AT&T Park, prompting Harper to charge the mound and trigger a bench-clearing brawl; both players threw and landed punches during the fracas, while an enraged Strickland had to be forcibly restrained and removed from the field by several teammates.
Harper’s four-game ban was reduced by MLB to three games on appeal. The former National League MVP began serving his suspension on Wednesday night, and is eligible to return Sunday when the Nationals visit Oakland.