News

Boston’s Lester denies doctoring ball in game 1 win

Boston’s Lester denies doctoring ball in game 1 win

DIDN'T DOCTOR: Oct 23, 2013; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Jon Lester throws a pitch against the St. Louis Cardinals in the first inning during game one of the MLB baseball World Series at Fenway Park. Photo: Reuters/Charles Krupa

By Larry Fine

BOSTON (Reuters) – Controversy was in the air before Thursday’s Game Two of the World Series as Red Sox pitcher Jon Lester denied allegations that he cheated in Wednesday’s 8-1 win over the Cardinals in the series opener.

Cardinals minor leaguer Tyler Melling tweeted a picture of Lester appearing to rub a slimy green substance on the ball during his outing, and wondered on the social networking website whether he was using Vaseline to make his pitches harder to hit.

Lester stopped to address reporters outside the Boston dugout during warm-ups prior to Thursday’s Game Two at Fenway Park against St. Louis.

“The picture does look bad, but it’s resin,” said Lester, who blanked the Cardinals on five hits over 7-2/3 innings while striking out eight in a masterful performance. “It’s resin. In my next start, I’ll do the exact same thing.”

Boston manager John Farrell defended Lester during his pre-game news conference, Major League Baseball considered it a closed case while the Cardinals general manager called it “a non-issue.”

“We cannot draw any conclusions from this video,” an MLB spokesperson told reporters. “There were no complaints from the Cardinals and the umpires never detected anything indicating a foreign substance throughout the game.”

Cardinals General Manager John Mozeliak told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch: “As far as I’m concerned it’s a non-issue. It’s something that arose in social media and not from our players or manager or our coaching staff. To me it does not represent a concern.”

Farrell, who before taking the Red Sox manager’s job had previously served as the team’s pitching coach, said: “If you know Jon Lester, he sweats like a pig and he needs resin. And you know what, he keeps it in his glove.

“Other guys will keep it on their arm. Other guys will keep it on their pant leg. So that’s my response to the allegations.”

St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said he would not blame the defeat on any question of bending the rules.

“The way that we approach this is we just play the game,” said former major league catcher Matheny. “We don’t deny that some things have been acknowledged. And if that’s what he claims, then that’s what it is. That’s all there is to it.

“And right now it’s pretty much a dead issue. We move on with the fact that the league now has to take notice.”

Lester said he throws a resin bag into his glove before every game and rubs his fingers on it during the contest to get a better grip on the ball.

The left-hander said he first began covering his glove with resin to keep from disrupting his tempo by walking to the back of the mound to grab the resin bag when his hand felt damp.

“It’s perfectly legal,” Lester said about his practice. “They put it (resin bag) back there for a reason.”

“I take it as a compliment. I felt like I had good stuff last night.

“It’s all I’ve ever used and all I will use,” he underlined. “I know that not once I have cheated. Won’t cheat.”

Recent Headlines

yesterday in Sports

Jets sign former Titans RB Chris Johnson 

Tennessee Titans running back Chris Johnson (28) walks off the field before an NFL football game against the Houston Texans Sunday, Dec. 29, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn.

In a text message to The Associated Press, Johnson confirmed it was a two-year deal.

yesterday in Sports

Bucks owner Herb Kohl reaches deal to sell team

Milwaukee Bucks owner Herb Kohl, center, shakes hands with investment firm executives Wesley Edens, right, and Marc Lasry, at a news conference after reaching a deal to sell the franchise Wednesday, April 16, 2014, in Milwaukee. The deal is subject to approval by the NBA and its Board of Governors.

Bucks owner Herb Kohl has reached a deal to sell the franchise to New York investment firm executives Marc Lasry and Wesley Edens.

yesterday in Sports

Patrols increase near Marathon finish line

With his attorney, Shannon Lopez, left, beside him Kevin Edson is arraigned in Boston Municipal Court, Wednesday, April 16 2014, in Boston. Edson was arrested Tuesday near the Boston Marathon finish line carrying a backpack containing a rice cooker on the anniversary of the bombings. Edson was sent to a state psychiatric facility for an evaluation Wednesday following his initial court appearance and ordered held on $100,000 bail. He is due back in court on May 7.

Police have stepped up patrols near the Boston Marathon finish line, a day after a masked man walked in the street with a rice cooker in his backpack.

yesterday in Music, Sports

Lorde meets Hall of Famer who inspired ‘Royals’

lorde

The singer behind the hit meets the real-life Royal that inspired her song.

yesterday in Viral Videos

Kicked in the head by a train

Kicked By Train

This man tried to take a selfie while a train passed but was a little too close.

Bellingham Traffic