Lance McCullers responds to accusations of foreign substance on his cleat
Lance McCullers has a perfectly good explanation for why he aroused suspicion during his start against the New York Yankees on Thursday.
In the fifth inning of the eventual 6-5 loss, the Houston Astros right-hander was caught on the YES Network broadcast with what appeared to be a foreign substance on his right cleat. The image quickly went viral on Twitter as many users openly wondered what McCullers had on there.
Wait a second. What is that on Lance McCullers cleat?! pic.twitter.com/dTnqApi2Sh
— Justin Diamond (@justinddiamond) May 3, 2018
I need an explanation as to what this is on Lance McCullers’ cleat… pic.twitter.com/tA0HBVycjb
— Patrick Hennessy (@TrueHennessy) May 3, 2018
— The Simonetti Source (@SimonettiSource) May 3, 2018
McCullers sure has an interesting looking substance on his cleat that isn't dirt
— Pinstripe POV – JP (@PinstripePOV) May 3, 2018
I saw a glob of something slimey on McCullers cleat. Hmmmm
— Annalise (@lssantora) May 3, 2018
After the game, McCullers took some time to respond to the accusations and posted a video on Twitter explaining that the “foreign substance” was simply a hard plastic that he was using to cover a hole in his lucky cleats.
“Y’all a–,” he wrote in his caption. “Let me wear my cleats in peace.”
The 24-year-old McCullers entered play on Thursday with a 4-1 record and a 3.71 ERA on the season. He went seven innings against the Yankees, giving up three earned runs on five hits and three walks in a no-decision.
While the suspicious material here ultimately turned out to be innocuous, the timing is at least interesting after an American League opponent implied earlier this week that Houston’s pitchers might be doctoring the baseball.