Like any other sport, baseball is always exciting to watch but what a loss Hector Santiago Suspended is. It also has strict rules that govern how players should conduct themselves to ensure fair play and maintain the integrity of the game. Officials often confirm that players follow these rules, especially players in Major League Baseball.
A baseball player must follow one rule: ensuring that he does not have any grip-enhancing foreign substance. Recently, there has been a crackdown on the players to try to capture anyone violating the rules.
The crackdown has led to the disciplining of a Seattle Mariners Pitcher, Hector Santiago. Santiago is the first player that the officials have punished as a result of the crackdown.
Who is Santiago?
Born on 12/16/1987, the 33-year old baseball pitcher has played in 9 major league seasons since his debut on 7/06/2011. It is now his 10th major league season; however, it is his first season with the Mariners. He is an incredible pitcher who, until now, has had a promising career playing for different teams, including Detroit Tigers, Chicago White Sox, and New York Mets.
On June 27, when there was an arguably exciting game between the Chicago White Sox and Seattle Mariners, officers ejected him out of the game. The umpires took his glove and went on to examine it. The umpires found a sticky substance on his glove, and the MLB later announced that Santiago would get a 10-game suspension.
However, his 10-game suspension is one with pay. His contract requires the Mariners to pay him $700,000 while in major leagues and $150,000 while playing in the minors.
At first, the MLB delayed the suspension pending an appeal that Santiago appealed to MLB special adviser John McHale Jr. However, the request did not succeed as the decision by MLB was upheld. The suspension was now set to begin on July 16.
On July 27, the mariners reinstated Santiago to the active roster as he had served his 10-game suspension. He can now play, but it is unclear whether he will get a starting role for the Mariners.
Santiago’s side of the story
Santiago claims that the substance on his glove was a mixture of sweat and Rosin. In MLB rules, the only thing you can apply as a pitcher is Rosin. Rosin is a sticky powder that can help the pitcher hold the ball more firmly.
Servais was also of the opinion that the substance on his glove was only Rosin. He added that the decision by the MLB to suspend Santiago surprised him. Crew chief Tom Hallion also supported the theory that Santiago did not have a foreign object but instead had only the Rosin.
The rationale behind the crackdown
Baseball officials mentioned the crackdown for the first time on June 3 as they were concerned about the offence. Commissioner Rob Manfred gave the announcement concerning the crackdown announcing that it would start on June 15. Manfred stated that using a foreign object helped players have a better grip on the ball hence; imposes an unfair competitive edge over other players.
It is important to note that since June 3, the average spin rates of pitches have reduced. The crackdown’s effect is now evident. There are mixed reviews about the crackdown as some people support it while others feel it is unnecessary.
The controversy of the condition
It is not clear whether Santiago was in the wrong as there are many contradicting opinions about the decision. MLB officials did not mention the substance that they spotted on Santiago’s glove, while on the other side, Santiago claimed that it was only Rosin mixed with sweat. Many fans and baseball pundits can only guess and develop their theories on who is right or wrong.
Should Rosin be banned?
Rosin is the only substance that baseball players can use to enhance their grip on the ball. One may argue that it should also be banned as it may defeat the whole purpose of having a fair game. It is a question for discussion between you and other fans.
Santiago is the first player to be disciplined due to the crackdown to ensure that the games are fair. All players should respect all rules to avoid landing in similar circumstances. However, officials should be careful not to incriminate a person who follows the rules because it beats the purpose of the whole exercise.
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