WASHINGTON (AP) Nationals closer Jonathan Papelbon has been suspended for three games and fined by Major League Baseball for throwing a pitch in the ''head area'' of Baltimore's Manny Machado.
The penalty was announced Friday.
The Nationals said Papelbon will appeal, making him eligible to pitch Friday night against the Philadelphia Phillies, who traded him to Washington in July.
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In the ninth inning of Baltimore's 4-3 victory at Washington on Wednesday night, Papelbon's first pitch to Machado was up and in, and his third hit him Machado the upper arm. Papelbon was ejected.
The Nationals are barely hanging on to the faintest of playoff hopes. They entered Friday trailing the first-place New York Mets by 7 1/2 games in the NL East.