The tense pitcher-batter game came four days after Donaldson wondered aloud to reporters if it was a coincidence that Cole’s turnover rates plummeted after four minor leaguers were given a 10-month suspension. matches for illegal use of sticky substances on baseballs. (Cole attributed his poor performance to poor mechanics.)
Donaldson said on Wednesday he didn’t regret speaking out, adding that he didn’t believe Cole was the only offender.
“He was the first guy to pitch since the suspensions came in, and he’s the first guy that you could see the turnover rates drop,” said Donaldson. “There were 12 guys whose turnover rates fell last week. So it’s not just Gerrit Cole. “
Increased rotation changes the plane and movement of the throws, making them more difficult to hit. Throughout baseball history, pitchers have used a variety of substances to better grip baseball, an illegal but often overlooked process. There is a growing belief that the recent dominance of launchers can be partially attributed to the widespread use of substances like Spider Tack, a sticky paste that can allow launchers to dramatically increase their spin speed.
Cole’s turnover rates increased significantly from 2017 to 2019, when he won a career-high 20 games with the Houston Astros. In an awkward press conference on Tuesday, Cole did not respond if he had ever used Spider Tack.
“I was hesitant about the specificity of the question because I don’t think this is the forum to discuss this stuff,” Cole said Wednesday. “There is an appropriate time for the players to discuss these things. I will keep it on this forum. “
Cole’s fastball averaged 98.2 mph on Wednesday night, just above his season average. He wouldn’t admit any additional satisfaction in knocking out Donaldson twice. Cole’s 113 strikeouts this season are the largest in 13 starts in club history, surpassing Al Downing’s 104 in 1963.