Hamels Pegs Harper on Purpose, Nats GM NOT Happy

Washington Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo made sure of that this morning in an interview with The Washington Post, calling Phillies pitcher Cole Hamels "fake tough" and that hitting Washington rookie Bryce Harper with a pitch Sunday was "a classless, gutless, chicken (bleep) act."

Hamels admitted after the Sunday night ESPN game that his fastball to the middle of Harper's back in the first inning was intentional.

"I was trying to hit him," Hamels said after the game, which he and the Phillies won 9-3. "I'm trying to continue the old baseball. I think some people kind of get away from it."

If Hamels was referring to noted intimidators such as Don Drysdale or Bob Gibson, he might have missed one point. They didn't admit to throwing at anyone. They just stared down their opponents.

"Cole Hamels says he's old school?" Rizzo told The Post. "He's the polar opposite of old school. He's fake tough. He thinks he's going to intimidate us after hitting our 19-year-old rookie who's eight games into the big leagues? He doesn't know who he's dealing with."

Harper, who said he had no idea what prompted the pitch, said nothing on the field and took first base. He also took home later in the inning, stealing home when Hamels made a pickoff attempt to first base.

Rizzo called for Hamels to be suspended. Major League Baseball has not announced any disciplinary action.