Toronto Blue Jays right-hander Jay Jackson said he was tipping his pitches on the night of the infamous and highly scrutinized sideways glance from New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge.
Judge hit a 462-foot home run off Jackson in the eighth inning of Monday’s game, won by the Yankees. Judge was caught looking toward the Yankees’ dugout during the at-bat, prompting speculation from the Blue Jays’ TV announcers then and blowing up on social media afterward.
The Athletic reported Wednesday that Yankees first base coach Travis Chapman picked up on the grip that Jackson employed. However, Jackson said it was the timing of his delivery that tipped off the Yankees.
“From what I was told, I was kind of tipping the pitch,” Jackson told The Athletic. “It was (less) my grip when I was coming behind my ear. It was the time it was taking me from my set position, from my glove coming from my head to my hip. On fastballs, I was kind of doing it quicker than on sliders. They were kind of picking up on it.”
Jackson was optioned to Triple-A after the game.
The glance seen ’round the world by Judge prompted endless cries of cheating, a la the Houston Astros scandal, and sparked outcry from the Blue Jays about the positioning of the Yankees’ base coaches during Tuesday’s game.
But catching clues the old-fashioned way is still a legal part of the game. The Astros illegally used electronics to steal signs in their scandal.
“If you’re doing things in plain sight, I think that you have to be able to correct them and you have to be willing to have the consequences be what they are,” Blue Jays manager John Schneider said before Tuesday’s game. “If it’s done fairly, yeah, that’s part of the game, everyone’s looking to help their teammates, everyone’s looking to pick up on tendencies, so anything that’s happening on the field in the right way, totally fair game.”
–Field Level Media
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