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After miscue, Harper urged to exhibit more control

CINCINNATI -- Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper continues to show that he is not perfect in the outfield. During Saturday's 7-6 victory over the Reds, Devin Mesoraco reached base on an error by Ian Desmond, scoring Jay Bruce. The ball went to Harper, who overthrew the cutoff man while trying to throw Bruce out at the plate. It allowed the Reds runners to advance to second and third, but Cincinnati did not score any more runs in the inning.

Manager Davey Johnson said Harper must find a way to control his emotions on the field.

"[Harper] can't control his emotions; he is going to have to learn," Johnson said. "He understands it, but he can't control his emotions. He is a smart player, but he gets wound up at any moment. If he keeps the ball down, then he throws him out."

Harper acknowledged that he made a mistake but said, "If I throw him out, I'm perfect. If I don't, everybody will look at me and say I'm terrible. Nothing I can do."

Teammate Jayson Werth said Harper is a special player but has a lot to learn about the game of baseball.

"He's young. He is going to play a long time. He is a work in progress," Werth said.

Bill Ladson is a reporter for and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He also could be found on Twitter @WashingNats.
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