Mystics-Shock Preview

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Mystics-Shock Preview

Sitting at the bottom of the Eastern Conference, the Washington Mystics appear to be reaching their wits' end. Frustration is surely taking a toll on the WNBA-worst Tulsa Shock as well. The Mystics try for their first road win of the year and a sweep of the Shock on Sunday. Five days after snapping a season-high five-game losing streak with a 90-77 win over Phoenix, Washington (3-11) saw its struggles resume in a 78-73 defeat to San Antonio on Friday. Monique Currie had a team-high 15 points while Crystal Langhorne scored 13, but the Mystics were done in by the Silver Stars' 17-4 run in the third quarter. "It's very frustrating. I'm not used to losing," said veteran center Michelle Snow, who signed with Washington during the offseason. "You just want to scream, you want to blow up, you want to fight, whatever it takes to wake everybody up. Honestly, a change is going to come. You can be part of that change here or you'll just be part of that rotation (leaving town). That's the way any job is." While the Mystics' 3-6 home record leaves much to be desired, it looks good compared to their road efforts. Washington is 0-5 away from home and has lost 14 straight there overall. A matchup with Tulsa (2-13) could be just what the Mystics need to put those woes behind them. The Shock have dropped seven of nine on their own court, giving them the worst home mark in the league. Tulsa is coming off back-to-back double-digit losses at Bank of Oklahoma Center, falling 86-75 to Connecticut on Friday in its most recent game. Shooting a league-low 38.8 percent from the floor, the Shock were limited to 21.1 percent and outscored 25-10 in the first quarter. "That really was the difference, the slow start," coach Gary Kloppenburg said. "We're just not good enough to have lapses like that." Averaging a team-high 14.1 points, Ivory Latta was the lone bright spot for Tulsa, scoring 24 and going 9 of 14 from the floor. Latta had 16 points but was the only Shock player to score in double figures in a 64-61 loss at Washington on May 26 - Tulsa's sixth defeat in eight meetings in the series. Though the Mystics have dominated the Shock of late, they were handed a 77-59 defeat in their last visit to Tulsa on June 18, 2011. Latta scored 22 points and helped limit Washington to 33.8 percent shooting.

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Bryce Harper charges mound, throws punches after Hunter Strickland hits him with pitch

Bryce Harper charges mound, throws punches after Hunter Strickland hits him with pitch

In their two previous meetings, Bryce Harper took Hunter Strickland deep. Very deep, in fact.

So in their third encounter, Strickland made sure that Harper wouldn't have the chance to do it again. 

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In the top of the eighth inning of Monday's Nationals-Giants game, the San Francisco reliever went after Washington's best player on the first pitch and hit him in the thigh with a 98 MPH fastball.

Harper — without hesitation — responded by charging the mound and throwing his helmet at Strickland, and the two then squared off and exchanged punches.

Here is the wild video of the whole sequence:

Harper and Strickland were, of course, ejected after initiating one of the best MLB fights in recent memory. This was the pair's first time facing each other since Harper's two home runs in the 2014 NLDS, meaning Strickland's had a long time to get over No. 34's blasts but simply couldn't do it.

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Orioles' seven-game losing streak ends Monday largely thanks to Dylan Bundy

Orioles' seven-game losing streak ends Monday largely thanks to Dylan Bundy

BALTIMORE (AP) -- Dylan Bundy allowed two runs over seven innings in another strong start at Camden Yards, and the Baltimore Orioles beat the New York Yankees 3-2 Monday to snap a seven-game losing streak.

Jonathan Schoop had two RBIs to help the Orioles end their longest skid since a nine-game drought in 2011. Baltimore took a 3-1 lead with two unearned runs in the third inning and held on to improve the AL's best home record to 16-7.

Aaron Judge hit his major league-leading 17th home run for the first-place Yankees in this AL East matchup.

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Bundy (6-3) gave up seven hits, struck out three and walked one. The right-hander is 4-1 with a 2.23 ERA in six home starts this season.

Darren O'Day worked a perfect eighth and Brad Brach got three straight outs for his 10th save in 13 tries.

Yankees rookie Jordan Montgomery (2-4) allowed three runs, one earned, in 4 1-3 innings.