The MLB sticky stuff drama isn't limited to pitchers vs. umpires (or managers vs. pitchers in Joe Girardi and Max Scherzer's case). We've also got hitters barking at pitchers because they can no longer use any of the foreign substances that typically give the ball more spin as it leaves a pitcher's hand.
On Tuesday night it was Minnesota Twins third baseman Josh Donaldson taunting Chicago White Sox pitcher Lucas Giolito after hitting a two-run home run off him in the first inning. As Donaldson crossed home plate, he rubbed his hands together and yelled, "Hand's not sticky anymore!"
Giolito: 'He's a f***ing pest'
To no one's surprise, Giolito didn't really like hearing that from Donaldson. After the game, which the White Sox won 7-6, he gave reporters his response to Donaldson's taunt.
"He's a f***ing pest. That's kind of a classless move. If you're going to talk s***, talk s*** to my face. Don't go across home plate and do all that, just come to me. We won. The W's next to my name. They're in last place."
Donaldson may have hit a homer off Giolito, but it was the only hit he had all night, and it didn't result in the Twins winning the game. Giolito is right: the White Sox did win, and Giolito did get the win. However, the Twins aren't currently in last place, they're tied for third in the AL Central. But it's hard to blame him for that slip since the Twins have been at or near last place for most of the season.
Josh Donaldson responds to Lucas Giolito
The feud continued into the next day, when Donaldson showed up to a Zoom interview with reporters wearing a not exactly subtle T-shirt reading "You got something to say?"
Donaldson told reporters he was only talking to his teammates and didn't think he was showing up Giolito, though the White Sox pitcher may contend that loudly making a crack while on camera qualifies as showing up a pitcher.
Donaldson proceeded to repeatedly rip Giolito, again implying he had been cheating with the sticky stuff and revealing that the two had a conversation in the parking lot after the game in which Donaldson claims Giolito was less talkative.
Donaldson won't make a lot of friends outside his teammates if he's going to taunt pitchers like that, but he does have a reason to feel good.
Ever since MLB began cracking down on foreign substances on June 21, Donaldson has been on a tear. He's hitting .375 in the six games he's played, with two homers and a 10-point bump in his batting average (from .241 to .251).
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