Major League Baseball’s Foreign Substance Epidemic of May 2015 rolls on. Baltimore Orioles reliever Brian Matusz was ejected in the 12th inning of Saturday’s 1-0 loss to the Marlins for having a “foreign substance” on his arm. What, exactly, the substance was isn’t known officially, though The Baltimore Sun takes a stab at what it might have been:
The Orioles wouldn’t comment publicly on what, exactly, the sticky substance was. Orioles manager Buck Showalter and Matusz danced around the subject. But privately, the sense is that Matusz had a combination of rosin and something else — maybe sunscreen, maybe just sweat — that would have helped his grip on the baseball.
The whole “foreign substance” trick is something plenty of pitchers around the league use, but the MLB has cracked down on it as of late. Last week, Brewers pitcher Will Smith was ejected and suspended eight games for having a foreign substance—allegedly sunscreen and pine tar—on his arm. Thus, Matusz is the second pitcher to be ejected for this in the past week. As of now, however, Matusz has not been suspended by the league.