With a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the seventh inning, St. Louis Cardinals relief pitcher Giovanny Gallegos trotted out to the mound. Before he could even throw his first pitch though, longtime umpire Joe West told him he would need to switch hats after noticing a “foreign substance” on the brim.
Cards manager Mike Shildt took immediate exception to this, jogging out to the mound to give West a piece of his mind. After just a few words with the ump, former NL manager of the year was tossed from the contest.
Clearly still livid with the treatment of his pitcher, Shildt went on a heated rant during a postgame press conference.
The fourth-year St. Louis manager claimed the substance was just built up residue from Gallegos wearing the same hat all season. He implored the MLB to go after the pitchers who shamelessly, and fairly obviously, use concocted substances that actually provide an unfair advantage.
“You want to police some sunscreen and rosin? Go ahead. Get every single person in this league,” Shildt said. “Why don’t you start with the guys that are cheating with some stuff that’s really impacting the game?
“This is baseball’s dirty little secret, and it’s the wrong time in the wrong arena to expose it.”
Mike Shildt sounds off on Giovanny Gallegos' hat being confiscated: "You want to police some sunscreen and rosin? Go ahead. Get every single person in this league. … Why don't you start with the guys that are cheating with some stuff that's really impacting the game?" pic.twitter.com/02RetNKwQZ
— Bally Sports Midwest (@BallySportsMW) May 26, 2021
If Gallegos did in fact have an illegal substance on his hat, he sure didn’t need it. After he was forced to change caps, the fifth-year MLB pitcher finished out the Cardinals’ 4-0 shutout with three strikeouts.
Tonight’s win brings St. Louis to 27-22 on the year and first place in the NL Central.