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Mets closer Edwin Díaz suspended 10 games after ejection. Here's what the umpire says happened.

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CHICAGO — New York Mets closer Edwin Díaz was suspended for 10 games after he was ejected from the team's 5-2 win over the Chicago Cubs on Sunday night for having a foreign substance on his hand.

Díaz is the eighth pitcher suspended for sticky stuff since MLB started cracking down on pitchers using foreign substances to improve their grip and spin rates in 2021. Three have been Mets, including Max Scherzer and Drew Smith last year.

Díaz's suspension, issued by MLB senior vice president of on-field operations Michael Hill, will start with Tuesday's Subway Series opener against the New York Yankees at Citi Field unless Díaz appeals.

If Díaz's appeals, the suspension would be delayed until the process is complete. If he is ultimately suspended, the Mets would have to play a man a short for the duration. 

Díaz ejected before throwing a pitch  

Mets Cubs Baseball
New York Mets closer Edwin Díaz, right, reacts after being ejected by umpire Vic Carapazza as manager Carlos Mendoza looks down as he walks to the dugout during the ninth inning of a game against the Chicago Cubs on June 23, 2024. Nam Y. Huh / AP

Díaz came on in the ninth to try to seal the victory for the Mets, but was tossed by third-base umpire Vic Carapazza before throwing a pitch after an inspection of his glove and throwing hand.

Both Díaz and Mets manager Carlos Mendoza said the umpire said he thought the pitcher had too much of a combination of rosin, sweat and dirt on his throwing hand.

"The rules are the rules and they made the decision to throw him out," Mendoza said.

Umpire says "definitely wasn't rosin and sweat"

Carapazza, the crew chief, said in a pool report after game it "definitely wasn't rosin and sweat" on Díaz's hand.

"We've checked thousands of these," Carapazza said. "I know what that feeling is. This was very sticky."

Díaz said he was "really surprised" by the ejection.

"I use the same thing always," Díaz said. "I rub rosin and sweat and put my hand in the dirt a little bit to get a grip on the ball."

Third Mets pitcher tossed for sticky stuff

Mets Dodgers Baseball
New York Mets starting pitcher Max Scherzer, left, and manager Buck Showalter argue with umpire Phil Cuzzi, second from left, and umpire Dan Bellino after they found a sticky substance on Scherzer's glove and hand during the fourth inning of a game against the Los Angeles Dodgers on April 19, 2023. Scherzer was ejected from the game. Ashley Landis / AP

Díaz is the third Mets pitcher to be ejected for such an offense in the last year.

Smith, who was ejected and suspended 10 games last year for a similar offense, got two outs in place of Díaz. Jake Diekman then came in and struck out pinch-hitter Patrick Wisdom for his third save for the Mets, who have won four straight series.

New York has won 10 of 13 and is 13-6 in June and might need to find a temporary closer for the next two weeks. The Mets begin a two-game series against the visiting Yankees on Tuesday before hosting Houston for three games.

"Look, we've been through a lot this year," Mendoza said. "We'll find a way to get through it, you know? We'll continue to piece it together and, yeah, guys are going to have to step up. And I'm pretty confident that we'll get guys here that are going to be able to get us to the finish line when he's out."

Houston's Ronel Blanco was suspended on May 15. Seattle's Héctor Santiago and Arizona's Caleb Smith were suspended for 10 games each in 2021. The Yankees' Domingo Germán and San Diego's Robert Suárez were suspended last year.    

Díaz missed all of 2023 following knee surgery  

Díaz missed all of 2023 following knee surgery and struggled early this season. He had four blown saves and a 5.40 ERA before going on the injured list with a right shoulder impingement in May. He had been much sharper since returning, with three scoreless outings of an inning each.  

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