The Cardinals have been blown out by the Reds for two games in a row, but it’s not their fault. Certainly it has nothing to do with the malaise of clinching the division, the fact that they’ve been resting their players, or even the fact that the Reds are on a freakin’ tear right now. John Smoltz being old is irrelevant.
No, nothing to do with those things. It’s all Bronson Arroyo’s fault.
Now, I enjoy insulting Arroyo as much as the next Red-blooded American, but Dave Duncan couldn’t limit it to potshots about his hair, shitty guitar playing, or supplement usage. Oh no, he went as far as making irresponsible, unproven accusations that Arroyo was breaking the rules.
“I’m sure he had pine tar on his cap,” Duncan told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “He didn’t have any problem getting a grip. Balls like that can generate a lot more movement than a slick ball that hasn’t been rubbed up.”
And what proof did he have? Dick Pole speaks the truth:
“He shouldn’t make wild accusations like that,” Pole said. “If they suspected that last night, why didn’t they check him? They would find nothing. The balls [Smoltz] were throwing out looked fine to me.”
Finally, mark this moment in this history books my friends, because it’s the first time that Dusty Baker has said something I agree with:
“if anybody should know, it would be Duncan,” Baker said. “I remember they had Julian Tavarez over there. They threw his hat out, remember that? His hat was all messed up. They also had a left-hander, Steve Kline. It’s not like it’s something new.”