MLB’s confusing and seemingly inconsistent “sticky stuff” enforcement is what it is. Pitchers — and everyone else in and around baseball — just have to adapt and deal.
However … Mets reliever Drew Smith’s ejection from Tuesday’s Subway Series game at Citi Field was ridiculous.
Crew chief Bill Miller claimed Smith had the stickiest hands he had seen all year after the Yankees’ 7-6 win, and that his colleagues agreed. We will take them at their word. But here’s the thing: Smith never threw a pitch. So how about you just hand him a wet towel instead? It just seems way overboard to bounce a guy — and hand him a 10-game suspension where his team has to compete a man down for that span — when his alleged violation never impacted the game. And could have been fixed.
Also: This was interesting. From The Post:
According to Smith, he asked several Mets to touch his hands as he was leaving the field, none finding them sticky. He encountered an MLB official in the tunnel leading out of the dugout.
“I kind of forced him to feel my hands as I walked in,” Smith said. “He actually laughed and said there was nothing there.”
Smith said he would consult with the MLB Players Association before deciding whether to appeal the suspension.
Smith likely has no chance to get the suspension overturned — the rules are pretty rigid. But we do keep waiting for some team to have a specimen kit in the dugout and swab a guy’s hands immediately after he’s tossed. Because some sort of lab test that lays out how much (or little) foreign substance a pitcher has on his hands might be the trick to get MLB to reform the process.