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MLB Rumors: Pitchers Won't Be Checked for Foreign Substances at 2021 All-Star Game

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVJune 30, 2021

AP Photo/Matt Slocum

If you can't get enough of random checks for sticky substances on MLB pitchers, then the 2021 All-Star Game isn't for you.

The New York Post's Joel Sherman reported the league is easing the initiative for the Midsummer Classic. 

In addition to the All-Star Game's status as an exhibition, Sherman wrote how the spot checks "would clearly create further conversation around a hot-button issue when MLB will want attention focused on the biggest stars in the game, such as Ronald Acuna Jr., Shohei Ohtani and Fernando Tatis Jr."

Amid concerns pitchers are using foreign substances to gain an unfair advantage on opposing hitters, MLB umpires have begun checking hurlers for signs of any rule-breaking.

This has led to some entertaining moments, such as Washington Nationals ace Max Scherzer's growing increasingly exasperated and Oakland Athletics reliever Sergio Romo briefly disrobing.

NBC Sports Philadelphia @NBCSPhilly

The pitcher substances controversy isn't going away anytime soon!<br><br>Joe Girardi asked the umpires to inspect Max Scherzer in the middle of the fourth inning and the Nats were NOT happy. <a href="https://t.co/M1B5OsM2of">pic.twitter.com/M1B5OsM2of</a>

SportsCenter @SportsCenter

Sergio Romo was animated after umpires asked to check him for sticky stuff. <a href="https://t.co/vJM0tJ5rVa">pic.twitter.com/vJM0tJ5rVa</a>

Seattle Mariners reliever Hector Santiago was the first player ejected for violating the new policy, and he received a 10-game suspension that is under appeal.

As Sherman wrote, there isn't much need to utilize this practice in the All-Star Game. The event no longer determines who has home-field advantage in the World Series, thus removing any stakes tied to the outcome. 

There's ultimately little to gain from a pitcher deciding to get a little extra spin when he's on the mound July 13 at Coors Field in Denver.

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