“I mean the two checks were I guess normal,” Max Scherzer said last night, after his first start under MLB’s new foreign substance protocols, “umpires — this is new for everybody, but today they’re checking your hat, they’re checking your glove, you’re ready for them to check your hands, I wasn’t — just using rosin tonight, so I wasn’t doing anything, that’s all fine.”
But the two checks weren’t enough. Phillies’ skipper Joe Girardi saw Max Scherzer rubbing his hands through his hair in the fourth, and he’d never seen the pitcher do that before, so he asked the umps to look again, they did, Scherzer wasn’t happy, woah, differences, and it got ugly in Citizens Bank Park.
“Obviously Girardi, for me, it’s kind of confusing, if you watch the [Alec] Bohm at bat,” after which Girardi made his request, “I almost put a 95 MPH fastball in his head because the ball slipped out of my hand. The whole night I was sick of kind of licking my fingers and tasting rosin all night, so I couldn’t even get sweat from the back of my head because it wasn’t really a warm night, so for me, the only part that was actually sweaty for me was actually my hair, so I had to take off my hat to try to get some moisture on my hand to try to mix with the rosin.”
You can read and watch all about what transpired below. There’s another game coming up at 1:05 PM ET.
Go read your links...
Max Scherzer passes test in victory over Phillies - (WaPost)
"The Nats’ right-hander returned from the injured list, aced three inspections by the umpires and scored the win in a 3-2 victory to keep Washington rolling."
Max Scherzer calls for change to MLB's foreign substance enforcement - (Washington Times)
"Scherzer had tolerated his first two MLB-mandated checks between innings, even if he wore a scowl while the umpires peered at his hands, glove and hat."
Max Scherzer slams ‘Manfred rules’ on substances: ‘This is not the answer’ - (NBC Sports Washington)
"Scherzer’s first experience with the policy during Washington’s game against the Philadelphia Phillies didn’t go all that smoothly."
Nats won't let Phillies get under their skin, win again - (MASN)
"That matters more than anything else, because what’s the point if nobody cares about the actual results of major league ballgames?"
Bryce Harper dons sombrero after crushing home run off Max Scherzer - (NBC Sports Washington)
"Harper then returned to the dugout, where his teammates handed him a Phillies-branded sombrero that’s become part of the team’s home run celebration."
SEE IT: Max Scherzer irritated by first MLB foreign substance check - (NBC Sports Washington)
"After striking out the side against the Philadelphia Phillies to begin his Tuesday start, the umpires stopped Scherzer on his way back to the dugout."
"Nothing but sweat," umpire Alfonso Márquez said of what they found in Max Scherzer's hair after Joe Girardi asked them to check for foreign substances.— Matt Breen (@matt_breen) June 23, 2021
Other Nats Stories:
All-time Nationals top Draft picks - (MLB.com)
"Ahead of the 2021 Draft, take a look back at the Nationals’ top selections, beginning in ‘05 with the relocation to Washington."
Kyle Finnegan to Nationals' injured list with left hamstring strain - (MLB.com)
"The Nationals' bullpen took another hit on Tuesday when the club placed right-hander Kyle Finnegan on the 10-day injured list due to a left hamstring strain."
Finnegan's injury is minor, Nats hope; Hudson begins throwing - (MASN)
"Just as he was beginning to assert himself into a more prominent role in a bullpen that has needed more guys to step up, Kyle Finnegan has now landed on the 10-day injured list with a strained left hamstring."
Unexpected delays couldn't derail Fedde's breakthrough - (MASN)
"'I was like, it has to be a false positive,' Fedde said Sunday during a one-on-one interview outside the dugout at Nationals Park. 'Unfortunately, it wasn’t. I guess shock is really the only way to describe it.'"
Joe Girardi: "I’ve seen Max a long time. 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."— Todd Zolecki (@ToddZolecki) June 23, 2021
MLB: Max Scherzer bristles at Joe Girardi, sticky stuff crackdown - (Yahoo!Sports)
"On Tuesday night in Philadelphia, Washington Nationals ace Max Scherzer proved that it’s possible to spitefully, even combatively, unbuckle your belt and begin to disrobe on a baseball field."
Washington Nationals' Max Scherzer miffed as umpires inspect him 3 times - (ESPN)
"Two days into Major League Baseball's revamped enforcement of sticky stuff, a couple of things are clear.
"First, no one, no matter his stature, is above suspicion. Just ask Cooperstown-bound ace Max Scherzer."
Clayton Kershaw on the Max Scherzer incident. "I think there should be a punishment if they don’t catch a guy. Scherzer is one of the best pitchers of his generation. You better find something if you're going to check.''— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) June 23, 2021
Phillies' Joe Girardi ejected after repeated spats with Nationals, Max Scherzer over foreign substance check - (CBSSports.com)
"Girardi asked umpires to check Scherzer, but ended up getting ejected himself.'
National League East Clubs Take Aim At Pitching-Packed New York Mets - (Forbes)
"The biggest surprises, so far, are the Phillies and the Washington Nationals, who went from wild-card winners to world champions in 2019 but have struggled since."
MLB Trade Deadline Big Board: Jim Bowden evaluates 75 trade candidates, from Max Scherzer to Trevor Story – (The Athletic)
"If the Nationals decide to trade their future Hall of Fame ace, then he’ll be the headliner of this year’s deadline. However, they will have to feel they’re out of it at the end of July to even consider moving Scherzer..."
Kris Bryant on MLB’s crackdown on the sticky stuff: “We were so stupid as hitters, saying, ‘Oh, yeah, it’s for control. We just don’t want them to hit us.’ That was such a cop-out. I love that things are kind of going the other way. If we get hit, we get on-base percentage.”— Patrick Mooney (@PJ_Mooney) June 23, 2021
NL EAST UPDATES:
Phillies stars need to “star” the team into contention - (The Good Phight)
"If the Phillies are going to win this year, the star players already here need to play like it."
Marcus Stroman exits start early with injury - (MLB.com)
"The Mets had barely absorbed the news that Joey Lucchesi would need Tommy John surgery before another injury struck a prominent member of their rotation."
We’re About to Get to Know “The Captain” Better—So Here Are 5 Hobbies of His You May Not Know About - (Fish Stripes)
"From his day-to-day management of the front office, to side projects like helping the organization to set up roots in the Dominican Republic, Jeter has been an active part owner and team president."
Max Fried goes on IL with blister, Kyle Wright recalled - (AJC.com)
"The Braves added another starting pitcher to the injured list Tuesday, placing left-hander Max Fried on the 10-day IL with a blister on his left index finger. The move is retroactive to June 19."