Tuesday night was Clayton Kershaw’s first appearance under the new foreign substance guidelines. And while the focus was mostly on the loss to the Padres, the Dodgers hurler was asked what it was like being checked in between innings.
Kershaw gave the answer you might expect from him, telling reporters that it’s just the umpires’ job and they’re being instructed to do so. It’s part of the game now and probably will be for some time. But the Dodgers southpaw went on to say much more on the subject.
Kershaw referenced the incident that occurred between the Phillies and Nationals on Tuesday. Philly manager Joe Girardi asked umpires to check Max Scherzer on the mound, and Max did not react well to it. Understandably. The Dodgers pitcher didn’t like that one bit.
I will say this – How Girardi checked Scherzer or called him out, I think there should be a punishment if they don’t catch anything on the guy. Scherzer is one of the best pitchers of our generation and to see him get checked and mess up his rhythm, you better find something if you’re going to call him out on it. …If you call someone out, someone of Max Scherzer’s caliber, and you don’t find anything I think that looks pretty bad on his part.
The move by Girardi has not been received well across baseball, especially since the rule isn’t very popular either. The Dodgers haven’t had an issue with it in their first 2 days under the new regulations, but it’s not hard to see why any pitcher might be annoyed by that move. Especially when he had nothing to hide.
Major League Baseball already appears to have a big issue in their hands with the new rules, and not one player has been caught yet. The Dodgers haven’t complained, but it’s only a matter of time before the inconvenience of being checked gets the best of someone in a bad outing. Or even with a guy that’s on a roll.