Joc Pederson Shares Fantasy Football Group Texts That Led to Tommy Pham Slapping Him

Adam WellsMay 29, 2022

CINCINNATI, OHIO - MAY 27: Joc Pederson #23 of the San Francisco Giants walks across the field in the sixth inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ball Park on May 27, 2022 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
Dylan Buell/Getty Images

The bizarre story of Joc Pederson and Tommy Pham's altercation over a fantasy football disagreement hit another level Saturday night.

After the Cincinnati Reds' 3-2 win over the San Francisco Giants, Pederson shared with reporters messages from the group text they were involved in that included a GIF of him making fun of the San Diego Padres when Pham played for the team.

SF Giants on NBCS @NBCSGiants

Joc showed up with receipts of the fantasy football group chat with Tommy Pham, which included a GIF making fun of the Padres last season <a href="https://t.co/rCYbFRdwA8">pic.twitter.com/rCYbFRdwA8</a>

Speaking to reporters after Friday's game, Pederson said Pham slapped him after a brief confrontation in the outfield during pregame warm-ups.

"He kind of came up and said like, 'You remember from last year?’" Pederson said. "And I was like, 'Fantasy football?' He was like, 'Yeah.'"

It was at that point Pham struck Pederson across the face.

Pederson said that Pham accused him of cheating in a fantasy football league the two were in last year. He said the Reds outfielder was unhappy because he thought Pederson was cheating by "stashing players on my bench."

The dispute revolved around San Francisco 49ers running back Jeff Wilson Jr., according to Pederson:

"I put somebody—a player—on the injured reserve when they were listed as 'out,' and added another player. And then there was a text message in the group saying that I was cheating because I was stashing players on my bench. And then, I don't know, I looked up the rules and sent a screenshot of the rules and how it says that when a player's out you're allowed to put him on the IR, and that's all I was doing. And it just so happened he had a player, (49ers RB) Jeff Wilson who was 'out,' and he had him on the IR. So I said, 'you literally have the same thing on your bench.'"

Per the Athletic's C. Trent Rosecrans and Andrew Baggarly, there were disagreements on a group text that included multiple Major League Baseball players from different teams.

Pham admitted Saturday to slapping Pederson while also providing his side of the story:

"It was regarding my former team [Padres]," Pham told reporters. "I didn't like that and I didn't like the sketchy s--t going on in the fantasy. We had too much money on the line, so I look at it like there's a code. You're f--king with my money, then you're going to say some disrespectful s--t; there's a code to this."

"It's over as far as I'm concerned," Pederson told reporters Friday when asked if he might see Pham on Saturday. "I don't think I'll speak to him. I don't think he wants to speak to me I would assume, I don't know."

Pham was originally in Cincinnati's starting lineup prior to the game, but Rosecrans and Baggarly noted the Giants requested he not play and the Reds eventually relented after the game was delayed because of rain.

MLB announced Saturday that Pham was suspended for three games as a result of the altercation. He was also fined an undisclosed amount.

Pederson is in his first season with the Giants. He split last year between the Chicago Cubs and Atlanta Braves. The 30-year-old hit three homers in 15 games in the playoffs to help the Braves win the World Series.