It wasn’t long after the first start of Minnesota Twins starting pitcher Jose Berrios that he had to face speculation of possibly having some “help”.
The Minnesota Twins made the move to call up Jose Berrios earlier this week. He earned his first start of the 2017 season on Saturday against the Cleveland Indians, and he definitely didn’t disappoint.
With success comes doubt, though, and unfortunately for Berrios, that’s what he’s facing right now. It’s not serious speculations or doubt. It’s mainly just social media garbage. What has brought about the doubt and speculation, though?
Jose Berrios would grab the tip of his hat after receiving a ball from the umpire. Of course, speculation came out almost immediately about how he could be using pine tar to help with his pitching.
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Berrios and several scouts got a good laugh out of this one. Jose, himself saying, “It’s sweat with the dirt. I touch my hat. There’s sweat on my hand. I use the rosin bag and dirt.”
Fellow Minnesota Twins’ starting pitcher, Ervin Santana backed up his teammate saying, “If you watch every single start, he always grabs his hat anywhere he’s at. It’s part of his routine. It’s like his habit.”
That’s the word that stood out to me – habit. Why would a pitcher who’s spent all year in AAA finally get called up and cheat?
There’s a much higher likelihood that he was nervous. There’s no reason to speculate that Berrios was cheating in any way. He had a solid opening game, yes, but he’s been great all year long. That should be no surprise.
His career in the MLB may not be spotless, but he’s still young and improving. Despite a MLB career ERA of 8.02 in 14 starts, he had shown signs of improvement, especially this year.
Finally, Santana was asked about the skepticism of Jose’s success in his first game of the year. He said, “People change, you know? He’s always been good in the minor leagues, so does that mean he used it in the minor leagues?”
Again, this is all speculation from story-hungry reporters, but it is laughable. In conclusion, it’s simple to see why Jose Berrios found success. Finally, he found his confidence in the minors and now he is bringing it to Minnesota. Here’s to hoping he can keep it up and have a strong 2017!