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Leo Mazzone retracts the John Smoltz pine tar allegation

Sep 22, 2011, 5:02 PM EDT

leo mazzone braves phone

Yesterday Leo Mazzone kinda sounded like he admitted that John Smoltz used to put pine tar on baseballs.  Today he kinda sorta retracted it. His comments on WNNX radio in Atlanta today:

“We were trying to have some fun on the air and in trying to have some fun somebody took a story and ran with it and said that I said that Smoltzy cheated in the game,” he said.  When asked directly if Smoltz cheated he said “absolutely not” and “that’s a bunch of bologna.”  He also played the “my comments were taken out of context” card.

But he did say that pine tar was used at least a little bit:

“With something like pine tar, that’s not doctoring a baseball. That’s trying to get a grip when it’s cold. What’s wrong with that?”

I guess nothin’ if “everybody does it.”  Right Leo?

  1. lar @ wezen-ball - Sep 22, 2011 at 5:06 PM

    Is your nickname now “somebody”, Craig?

  2. cur68 - Sep 22, 2011 at 5:11 PM

    Looks like someone may have had a phone call from an old pitching buddy about ‘outing’ him on national radio. Didn’t he get the drift? No one really cared that much. Retracting and wiffle-waffling about it will make the story bigger.

    If you really want to pump this thing up then, by all means, deny, deny, deny. Worked well for Roger Clemens, right? Hell, is this where we cue ‘tuftsb’ to come on here and retract his statement affirming that he also doctored balls because his post was out of context? Actually, considering Bob’s posts and what I’ve heard of him, pardon me if I don’t hold my breath.

    • frenchysplatediscipline - Sep 22, 2011 at 7:05 PM

      I am sure said call from Smoltz took place yesterday.

      Not sure if anyone watched MLB tonight last night, but during the early portion of the program Smoltz was on the desk when Vasgersian brought up the subject.

      I don’t think I have ever witnessed a more awkward laugh than what Smoltz gave. He looked like he wanted to crawl under the desk.

      Who knows if it is true or not (probably), but one thing is for sure — Leo was crossed off at least one Christmas card list yesterday…

  3. amhendrick - Sep 22, 2011 at 5:15 PM

    I always thought that it was spelled “baloney” in this context.

  4. foreverchipper10 - Sep 22, 2011 at 5:31 PM

    I wonder if he spends his days in a rocking chair…

  5. nps6724 - Sep 22, 2011 at 5:39 PM

    Every chair for Leo is a rocking chair.

  6. vikesfansteve - Sep 22, 2011 at 11:39 PM

    Why do you need to doctor the ball when pitches 6 inches off the plate are called strikes.

    • crash1582 - Sep 23, 2011 at 7:03 AM

      Nah… Maddux/Glavine got the calls 6 inches off the plate. Smoltzy rarely got that cushion for some reason.

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