MLB Suspended Harper for four games after fight on Monday

MLB Suspended Harper for four games after fight on Monday
Bryce Harper is the face of the sport baseball needs: Edgy. Funny. Transcendentally talented. And willing to rush in a fury at Hunter Strickland, fists flying, rage on full display.
In the fight that erupted Monday between the Washington Nationals star and the San Francisco Giants' long-simmering relief pitcher, we found two truths.
The first: The best of baseball -- how it's meant to be played, and how it can rise above the din and become sports' most relevant topic -- lives on, however tenuously.
The second: Major League Baseball, in the form of its commissioner, still doesn't get it. Not fully. Not the way it needs to, the way a beautiful sport requires if it is to have the level of success and relevance it deserves in an increasingly crowded and competitive world.
It was just last week that Rob Manfred, the same commissioner who suspended Harper four games for the most exciting thing to happen to the game this season, told tech news site Cheddar, "We need to be on multiple platforms to grow the game to its full potential, and I think you'll see us in the coming years continuing to experiment with ways to deliver our product to young people."
That was to explain why Major League Baseball, wisely, had agreed to stream 20 games this season on Facebook.
But here's a not-so-secret fact, commish, one the tech world shouldn't have to tell you: Young people live in the moment, and they crave authenticity, and they yearn for excitement. What they're looking for is Harper's fists flying -- and Strickland's, too -- and baseball selling the idea that players policing themselves isn't just great theater. It's a rich part of the history of the game that too-squeamish owners and commissioners have spent years trying to erase.