Phillies manager Joe Girardi hears your claims that he took advantage of MLB’s new push to crack down on pitchers’ use of illegal substances.
But Girardi’s not second-guessing his decision to ask umpires to check Nationals’ pitcher Max Scherzer three times during last night’s game. Girardi insinuated that the Washington ace may have had more than hair gel under his lid, prompting the manager to have Scherzer checked by umps.
“I’ve seen Max a long time,” Girardi said via NJ.com. “Since 2010. Obviously, he’s going to be a Hall of Famer. But I’ve never seen him wipe his head like he was doing tonight, ever. It was suspicious for me. I didn’t mean to offend anyone. I’ve just got to do what’s right for our club.”
As OutKick reported, Scherzer was irritated with Girardi’s multiple requests to have the pitcher checked for sticky substances during Tuesday night’s game. After being checked for foreign substances for a third time in four innings, Scherzer became visibly frustrated.
Following a strikeout to end the fifth inning, Scherzer was seen staring a hole through Girardi as he exited the mound. The manager sprung up and screamed “Come on” to Scherzer, gesturing for the right hander to meet for a mid-game melee. Shortly thereafter, Girard was ejected.
Scherzer, who was credited with the win, commented on what he felt were ridiculous claims by Girardi, and why he was touching his hair between pitches – a practice that is approved the league: “I would be a super fool to use something tonight. You can check whatever you want. Take all my clothes off if you want. I have absolutely nothing on me. … The whole night, I was sick of licking my fingers and tasting rosin all night.”
Earlier Tuesday, Girardi was questioned on whether he would actively ask umpires to check pitchers for illegal substances, he responded by saying: “I’m not going to play games,” he said via NJ.com. “That’s silly. It’s just, if you see something that’s clear cut, you’ll probably ask them.”
Twenty-four hours later, Girardi’s the one in a sticky situation.