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Ted Lilly grabs some pine tar on the sly

Apr 30, 2013, 8:23 AM EDT

Maybe it was purely by accident, and maybe it didn’t help a bit — judging by his pitching line it didn’t anyway — but reader Big Leagues sends along a couple of screen captures from last night’s Dodgers-Rockies game which seems to show Ted Lilly opportunistically applying pine tar to his pitching hand after picking up a broken bat:




I mean, he’s not totally brazen about it, but he had that whole bat barrel to grab and still grabbed the part with the pine tar.


UPDATE: Yes, as many have pointed out, Lilly is a left-hander, so he’s not grabbing the pine tar with his pitching hand. Which means the only possible explanation is that, in addition to being really sly here, he’s a MASTER OF DECEPTION.

  1. Mr. Furious - Apr 30, 2013 at 8:28 AM

    Lilly is left-handed and those screencaps show him picking it up with his right hand. Did he also handle it with his left hand at some point that isn’t shown?

    • knowlegeforyou - Apr 30, 2013 at 8:41 AM

      Great observation.

    • bigleagues - Apr 30, 2013 at 9:55 AM

      Meaningless. He picks up the bat with his right hand, because doing so with his left hand is too obvious.

      What he can then do to transfer the pinetar to his right hand when needed is rub the pine tar into the base of his glove.

      Also, rubbing the baseball with both hands would provide similar benefit (word used lightly in the case of last night’s start).

      One thing is for sure, with 2/3 of the bat with NO pinetar on it, there is no need to reach for the part that is slathered in it.

      • djpostl - Apr 30, 2013 at 12:04 PM

        Winner winner, chicken dinner. Means nothing that he picked it up with left hand.

        Wipe the base of your mitt, touch the bill of your cap and presto…

  2. darthicarus - Apr 30, 2013 at 8:35 AM

    Kenny Rogers approves

  3. melkipershero - Apr 30, 2013 at 8:44 AM

    If baseball had golf rules, someone would have called this in.

    • heyblueyoustink - Apr 30, 2013 at 9:06 AM

      1-800-rat-ship ….. my first thought when I heard of that particular hotline.

    • historiophiliac - Apr 30, 2013 at 9:22 AM

      It’s MLB/Bud Selig, so I think you mean a telegram.

      • djpostl - Apr 30, 2013 at 12:05 PM

        Pigeon carrier perhaps.

      • historiophiliac - Apr 30, 2013 at 12:10 PM

        Please have to poop. Please have to poop.

  4. ezthinking - Apr 30, 2013 at 9:08 AM

    A year or so ago, Lilly was also called out for pitching about 6 inches in front of the rubber. He’s all kinds of sly – or just a rule breaker.

    • pellypell - Apr 30, 2013 at 9:20 AM

      6 inches and a rubber… or what my wife calls, our first date.

      • bigleagues - Apr 30, 2013 at 1:21 PM



        Get this guy a microphone!

  5. hisgirlgotburrelled - Apr 30, 2013 at 9:19 AM

    Grabbing it with his glove hand doesn’t mean anything. That’s what you would do; it’s on his right hand and he can go to it to get grip on his fingers without having it just all over his throwing hand. Anyone that’s ever touched pine tar would know not to grab that bat where he did with either hand unless you knew what you were doing. It would have been way too sticky to pitch if he grabbed it with his throwing hand, and looking at that first picture, that first ball he touched would have been covered in pine tar.

    • bigleagues - Apr 30, 2013 at 9:56 AM


  6. spellingcops - Apr 30, 2013 at 9:22 AM

    You post about Ted Lilly possibly grabbing some pine tar while getting shelled, but make no mention of Nolan Arenado getting his first hit and first home run in his second major league game? Sorry to sound like a homer, but the East Coast bias thing is alive and well.

    • paperlions - Apr 30, 2013 at 9:25 AM

      Nah, you are just being a homer. Guys get their first career hits/HRs all the time and except for local coverage, no one really cares.

      • historiophiliac - Apr 30, 2013 at 9:40 AM


      • paperlions - Apr 30, 2013 at 10:37 AM

        Hey, you didn’t see an article when Kozma got his first MLB hit or HR, did you?

      • historiophiliac - Apr 30, 2013 at 10:43 AM

        Of course I did. He’s a hometown boy made good. lol

      • bigleagues - Apr 30, 2013 at 9:58 AM


        Except that Arenado is known locally as the best position prospect since Tulo so them Rockies folk prolly tend to get a lil uppity about percieved lack of said coverage.

      • paperlions - Apr 30, 2013 at 10:35 AM

        Yeah, but it is fun telling people they are being a homer. :-)

      • historiophiliac - Apr 30, 2013 at 11:12 AM

        I know, and then it’s fun being a homer when someone rolls their eyes at you for being a homer.

      • paperlions - Apr 30, 2013 at 11:14 AM

        Yep….can’t take this shit personally….you should revel in being a homer (if you are one), but you need to be aware of the homerism for it to work.

      • historiophiliac - Apr 30, 2013 at 11:19 AM

        Wait, you’re unclear on whether or not I’m a homer?

      • paperlions - Apr 30, 2013 at 11:25 AM

        That “you” was intended to be a 3rd person subject. Everyone knows you are a homer.

      • historiophiliac - Apr 30, 2013 at 11:27 AM


      • bigleagues - Apr 30, 2013 at 1:17 PM

        So true Paperlions.

        And I’m unashamed of my homerism tendencies, though I try to keep them subdued when in a “national” forum (I put national in quotes because everyone knows HBT is just another front for the megahugespectacularcongolomerate o.k.a. East Coast Bias Media, INC. LLC – a 501c3 funded by the generous donations of Red Sox/Patriots, Yankees/Giants, Phillies/Eagles and Met’s fans for the sole purpose of influencing media everywhere to induce a sense of dread and inferiority in sports fans from every other region in North America – CFL included.).

    • koufaxmitzvah - Apr 30, 2013 at 10:19 AM

      I thought LA was on the West Coast.

      • paperlions - Apr 30, 2013 at 12:50 PM

        Nope, Louisiana is on the Gulf Coast.

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