- Dodgers pitcher Trevor Bauer has been suspected of using banned substances to improve his pitching.
- MLB recently cracked down on enforcing the ban on those substances, introducing harsh penalties.
- During “Sunday Night Baseball” on ESPN, Bauer explained how players use the substances.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Trevor Bauer, a pitcher for the Los Angeles Dodgers, explained during a national broadcast on Sunday how pitchers used banned sticky substances.
Bauer, who’s been suspected of using the banned substances, said in a live interview with ESPN’s “Sunday Night Baseball” during the Dodgers’ game against the Chicago Cubs that the substances help improve grip and spin rate.
-MLB Foreign Substance Checks (@StickyCheck) June 28, 2021
“It also keeps the ball stuck to your fingers longer so that you can actually apply the force in a way that’s tangential to the surface of the ball, which increases spin,” Bauer said, adding: “It’s unclear whether the majority of the spin-rate increase comes from the position that it allows you to get to or the increased friction on the ball, or if it’s a combination of both. But that’s really where the performance enhancement comes from.”
MLB recently cracked down on pitchers using foreign substances with a new policy requiring umpires to regularly search players for the substances and imposing harsh penalties for those caught using them.
Bauer has called the new MLB policy “a mess.”
“MLB was telling players and teams for three or four months already this year: ‘Do not change anything. We’re not going to enforce it this year’ … And now all of a sudden it’s like, oh, ha ha, everything’s changing,” Bauer said during an interview with SportsNet Los Angeles earlier this month.
He added: “They haven’t thought through a lot of these things. They just made the umpires judge, jury, and executioner.”
-SportsNet LA (@SportsNetLA) June 16, 2021
“The best analogy for this is you have basically people who have never seen traffic before, have now been given no radar guns, and have been told, ‘Hey, you’re supposed to tell who’s speeding and who’s not,'” he said.
Bauer will make $38 million this year as part of a three-year, $102 million contract with the Dodgers.
Other pitchers have expressed their grievances on the field with reactions to the inspections, including one player who started to take off his pants when umpires approached him.