Cole Hamels and Bryce Harper bury the hatchet
You don't have to ask what day.
On May 7, Hamels was called "fake tough" from Washington Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo. Hamels would also be suspended that day.
One night earlier, Hamels beaned Harper, Washington's 19-year-old rookie phenom, with the first pitch he threw to him at Nationals Park. Hamels admitted he threw the pitch intentionally afterward.
In the last month, Hamels joked that he voted for Harper for the All-Star Game.... and Harper said he did the same.
Have Hamels and Harper caught up yet in Kansas City?
"You know," Harper said, laughing. "He said congratulations and he was really nice. There you go."
"Yeah, I saw him," Hamels said. "I'm really happy for him. To be able to be here at the age he is, from the first day I saw him play, he's a tremendous talent and he's fun to watch. To see him on this stage, it's pretty cool. To be a teammate with him - because, who knows, I might not have the opportunity to be a teammate with him, it's pretty cool."
Harper and Hamels might not be best buds, but they certainly respect the way the other plays the game.
Hamels was asked if he grew more respect for Harper after the way the teenager handled the May incident - taking the high road and not criticizing Hamels, as his general manager did.
"It shows the character that he has, and that's awesome to see from a 19-year-old," Hamels said. "Because when I was 19, I have no idea what kind of qualities I had, let alone to be in the big leagues and to have to deal with all of the sort of pressures that come from being that one main guy. It's nice to see the way he plays baseball, the way he goes about it. It's pretty cool."
The two will be forever linked by their first head-to-head matchup. Hamels, who has declined to talk about it since, accepted that he'd never escape it on Monday.
"I'll cherish the moment," Hamels said, "it's not like whatever people make it seem. I really do respect him and the way he plays."