Fernando Tatis Jr. Sign-Stealing Accusations 'Ridiculous,' Padres Manager Says

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorApril 27, 2021

San Diego Padres' Fernando Tatis Jr. celebrates his solo home run during a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers in Los Angeles, Saturday, April 24, 2021. (AP Photo/Kyusung Gong)
Kyusung Gong/Associated Press

San Diego Padres manager Jayce Tingler defended shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. against allegations that he was sign-stealing against the Los Angeles Dodgers, calling the accusations "ridiculous" in a chat with reporters Tuesday (h/t Bob Nightengale of USA Today).

"I know 100 percent he wasn't peeking at signs," Tingler added.

Tatis was accused of sneaking a glance at Dodgers catcher Will Smith before hitting his second home run off L.A. starting pitcher Trevor Bauer on Saturday. It was Tatis' fourth homer of the series.

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L.A. won anyway, 5-4, but it lost the four-game home series to San Diego.

Bauer notably broke down his thoughts on the matter in a video (8:20 mark) that also covered Tatis' celebrations:

"That's the type of stuff that would get you hit in other games," Bauer said about Tatis' alleged sign-stealing. "Now, I'm mild mannered about it. ... 

"Flip the bat and do all that stuff, fine. If you're going to look at the signs, not OK, and if you do it again, the team that you're playing probably isn't going to take too kindly to it, and there might have to be some on-field stuff. ... 

"That is disrespecting your opponent, looking at their signs, stuff like that. Whereas the bat flips and celebrating with your teammates is fine, in my opinion."

Padres first baseman Eric Hosmer defended Tatis. 

"That was maybe a little bit of confusion on their part," Hosmer said (h/t AJ Cassavell of MLB.com). "I don't think Tati was looking at signs. I've never really seen him do that. I certainly didn't see it last night."

There is no shortage of juice in the Dodgers-Padres rivalry.

The two teams clearly don't like each other much as they compete for the National League West title, and there have already been some dramatic moments, such as the benches clearing in extra innings and Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw getting into a shouting match with the Padres' Jurickson Profar in mid-April.

The Dodgers and Padres will meet again for a three-game series June 21-23 at San Diego's Petco Park.