Mets first baseman Pete Alonso chimes in on pitchers trying to gain an advantage by using foreign substances to increase their spin rate. Alonso says he's all for it if it helps pitchers keep the ball in the strike zone better.
- I'm wondering if you think MLB is doing the right thing by cracking down on pitchers with sticky stuff. And if so, why?
PETE ALONSO: Oh, absolutely not. I don't think so, because for me, I think that since the start of the game, pitchers have been using substances. I mean, there's a bag of rosin behind the mound right now to help guys dry their hands and get grip.
For me, I think whether they're using pine tar, rosin, Bullfrog, or sunscreen and rosin, or whatever they want to use to help control the ball, let them use it. Because for me, I go in the box every single day, and I see guys throwing harder and harder every day. And I don't want to-- I don't want 99 slipping out of someone's hand because they didn't have enough feel for it.
I think that the biggest concern is that Major League Baseball manipulates the baseballs year in and year out depending on free agency class, or guys being in an advanced part of their arbitration. So I do think that's a big issue, the ball being different every single year.
With other sports, the ball is the same. Like, basketball, football, tennis, golf, ball's the same. So I think that that's the real issue with the changing of the baseballs. And maybe if the league didn't change the baseball, pitchers wouldn't need to use as much sticky stuff.
Because for guys that feel the ball and throw the ball every single day and for it to change every single year, that's not fair to the people who are using it every single day and throwing it. So for me, I would rather them have control.
I don't care what they use. I mean, for me, I use pine tar when I go to hit. I have lizard skin. I have batting gloves. Like, I have the most advantage when it comes to holding onto my bat. So I wouldn't care because on our on-deck bag, we have pine tar rag, a pine tar stick, like a special sticky spray, rosin. I mean, you name it-- we have it.
I wouldn't care if they had that behind the mound to help hold onto the ball. Because when we start getting into these hotter months, guys start to sweat. And let's say if they lose a fastball arm side-- I mean, we all saw what happened to Kevin Pillar, and that's scary.
And we're lucky that he only had a broken nose. And it could be a lot worse depending on where it hits a guy. 100-mile-an-hour fastball, even though you're wearing a helmet, that's scary. So I'd rather have guys have as much stick as possible and focus on throwing the ball in the box as opposed to taking it away from them.