Former Phillies closer gives feuding Nationals sage advice from personal experience

Jonathan Papelbon is never shy about speaking his mind and offered the Nationals some hilarious advice.
Tampa Bay Rays v Philadelphia Phillies
Tampa Bay Rays v Philadelphia Phillies / Drew Hallowell/GettyImages

The emotional grind of the MLB season has a tendency to boil over in clubhouses and dugouts over the course of the 162-game schedule. Sometimes, those tensions reach a tipping point between teammates and in some instances, get picked up by cameras during live game broadcasts.

That's exactly what happened last Friday when the Washington Nationals faced off against the Miami Marlins in a battle between National League East foes. Nationals pitcher Mackenzie Gore took exception with the effort level displayed by teammate Nick Senzel after the third baseman was unable to make a play at first base on a grounder hit down the line. It resulted in a tense shoving match between the two that was picked up on the TV broadcast.

The exchange ended before it could escalate further, and the Nationals went on to defeat the Marlins 7-1. The damage was done however, as the flare-up between Gore and Senzel found its way to social media and became a hotbed of discussion among fans and former players.

Former Phillies closer gives feuding Nationals sage advice from personal experience

One of those former players happened to be former Philadelphia Phillies closer and current Foul Territory co-host Jonathan Papelbon. The Phillies' All-Time leader in career saves was no stranger to controversy during his 12 year-MLB career.

As some fans might remember, he had a rather infamous dustup with some guy named Bryce Harper when the two were Nationals teammates in 2015. Papelbon took exception with Harper not giving full effort while running out a ground ball, and the two got into a shoving match, with Papelbon taking it one step further by pushing Harper into the wall with his hands up at his throat.

Papelbon was more than happy to offer his take on how to handle a dugout skirmish when he took to social media to comment on the situation in D.C.

"Boys it’s a lot better if you just take the fight to the tunnel. Trust me I have already learned this lesson!!" Papelbon posted on X, formerly Twitter.

The controversial and outspoken former Phillies pitcher recently mentioned that Harper has come a long way as a player and feels Harper deserves his place as one of the current faces of MLB.

"Absolutely no question about it, [Harper] has become the player our league needs and he knows it and cherishes it. Some may not believe this but I pull harder for him than any other player," wrote Papelbon

While the Phillies continue their reign at the top of the NL East standings, it's clear the rest of the division lacks the same clubhouse chemistry that makes the Phillies a winning team on and off the field. Sometimes, the biggest strengths of a team don't appear in the box score.