Monday morning, Indians pitcher Trevor Bauer woke up and decided he wanted to stir some shit up on Twitter by suggesting the Astros’ pitchers are cheating by using illegal methods to increase the spin rates on their pitches.
It’s a specific way to jump on the “Astros’ pitchers are very good therefore they must be cheating” train, but it should also be said that most major league pitchers may be finding “advantages” one way or another so this isn’t even that much of a shocking accusation and mostly a weird thing to bring up on Twitter in the first place.
Bauer pulling this move is not exactly a surprise, since Bauer is intent on speaking his mind whenever he wants and he’s seemed fine with the blowback so far. We’re not going to get into it much more than that because we’re here for the current dunking, not past instances of Bauer making himself look bad.
Today’s fun started with Bauer replying to a tweet from @drivelinebases suggesting there must be something to the increased spin rates of Justin Verlander, A.J. Cole, and Charlie Morton since they joined the Astros.
If only there was just a really quick way to increase spin rate. Like what if you could trade for a player knowing that you could bump his spin rate a couple hundred rpm overnight...imagine the steals you could get on the trade market! If only that existed...— Trevor Bauer (@BauerOutage) May 1, 2018
You can read the thread that follows his tweets to see him decline to say how he thinks the Astros are specifically increasing spin rate while being egged on by sportswriter Molly Knight.
The best piece of this though, by far, is that the Astros themselves decided to have a little dunk contest throughout the afternoon. First, Lance McCullers went with the “your point is stupid, but if it wasn’t I want that secret because my spin rate could indeed use some help” reply.
Jealousy isn’t a good look on you my man. You have great stuff and have worked hard for it, like the rest of us, no need for this. I will ask though because my spin rate and spin axis on my 4 seem is a$$. https://t.co/jvbLuWWqgN— Lance McCullers Jr. (@LMcCullers43) May 1, 2018
A solid opening volley right there. Collin McHugh followed that up with a reply dripping with so much smoking sarcasm that it might be classified as a dangerous toxic substance.
If only there was this thing where people who had been around baseball a long time taught people who hadn’t been around as long. Imagine the possiblity for improvement yr over yr! We could call it coaching! https://t.co/WI4X1TCbaW— Collin McHugh (@Collin_McHugh) May 1, 2018
But the most recent and, as of now, final response from the Astros came from Alex Bregman, and just like his high-difficulty throws from third to first it was a ruthless snipe.
Relax Tyler ... those World Series balls spin a little different.... https://t.co/MZ7iIPXhbC— Alex Bregman (@ABREG_1) May 1, 2018
Let’s take a look at that replay!
Well done, and while it probably won’t make Bauer think twice before pulling this stuff again it at least gave us some solid Baseball Twitter Beef and everyone had fun online dunking on Bauer for a while. A well-spent afternoon.