Harper day to day after pitch strikes knee

Nationals star runs bases, tested in eventful sequence

Harper day to day after pitch strikes knee

PHILADELPHIA -- Bryce Harper suffered a right knee contusion that forced him out of Monday night's 4-3 victory over the Phillies after being struck by an errant pitch from right-hander Jeremy Hellickson.

The Nationals plan to re-evaluate Harper on Tuesday, and although he admitted after the game that his leg was still sore, neither he nor manager Dusty Baker seemed overly concerned.

"You won't know probably until [Tuesday]," Baker said. "After he ices tonight, then the trainers will lay some magic hands on him tomorrow afternoon, then we'll make an evaluation."

Harper bent over in pain at the plate after getting hit in the top of the seventh, but after getting checked on by Baker and trainer Paul Lessard, he took first base, wanting to stay in the game.

Hellickson proceeded to make several pickoff throws to the base, forcing Harper to dive back each time. Harper downplayed any effect that may have had, but said he felt sore while on base. The next batter, Daniel Murphy, lined out to left fielder Tyler Goeddel, who doubled off Harper at first after he came back into the base standing.

Goeddel nabs Harper from left

"I think sliding back into first base on that double play just probably wouldn't have helped us at all in that situation," Harper said. "It probably wasn't a good idea for me to slide back into first right there."

In the bottom of the inning, Chris Heisey entered the game in right field.

"We'll see how I feel in the morning," Harper said. "If I don't feel good, I'm not going to play. If I feel fine, then I'll be in there."

Jamal Collier covers the Nationals for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.