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Tigers’ Casey Mize blasts umpire who made him switch gloves: ‘It was a pretty (expletive) thing to do’

MLive- Flint/Saginaw/Bay City logo MLive- Flint/Saginaw/Bay City 6/16/2021 Evan Woodbery, mlive.com

Detroit Tigers Casey Mize knows what you were thinking when he was forced to switch gloves between innings on Tuesday night.

That’s why he was so angry.

“I thought it was a pretty (expletive) thing to do,” Mize said.

For the record, no, he wasn’t cheating. No, he wasn’t caught cheating. And no, he’s not sure exactly why his the color of his glove is suddenly unacceptable.

Mize was walking off the mound following the first inning of his start on Tuesday in Kansas City against the Royals, when John Tumpane stopped him for what looked like a friendly conversation.

According to Mize, Tumpane said Mize’s glove was too light-colored.

Mize said the glove, which he’s worn for every one of his big-league starts, was originally charcoal-colored, but may have faded a bit in the sun.

“He said the gray color was too light,” Mize said.

Color judgement aside, Mize was most angry because Tumpane’s order came on the same day that Major League Baseball announced a widespread crackdown on the use of sticky substances that some pitchers have used to help them grip the baseball and increase the spin rate on their pitches.

“I assume everyone thinks that I was using sticky stuff now, which I was not,” Mize said. “So I just thought the timing of it was pretty (expletive), honestly. The umpires need to get on the same page, because I’ve made 12 starts (in 2021) and everybody was fine with (the glove). Or John Tumpane just needs to have some feel and just let me pitch with the glove that the other team did not complain about. (Tumpane) brought it up himself. John’s a good umpire and a very nice guy. But I mean, just have some feel for the situation because I hate that I’m in a position now where I assume everyone thinks I was using sticky when in reality, that was not the situation at all.”

After the first inning, Mize tried out gloves in the dugout, eventually borrowing Kyle Funkhouser’s glove.

“I was pissed off. But once we got me a new glove, I kind of (stopped worrying) after that,” Mize said. “But I was pretty pissed for a couple of minutes or so.”

Mize reiterated that his main complaint is one of timing. In a matter of days, MLB umpires will begin checking gloves multiple times per game.

But on Tuesday, with the crackdown announced but not yet fully enforced, Mize said he fears that some fans will think he was skirting the rules.

“It looks very suspicious. I come out in the second inning with a completely different colored glove. So everybody’s first thought is, ‘I assume he got caught using sticky but they’re letting him stay in the game,’ which is not true whatsoever. That’s what I mean when I say the timing was pretty bad.”

Mize ultimately pitched 6 2/3 innings to get the win in the Tigers’ 4-3 win over the Royals on Tuesday night.

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