The history of bad blood and allegations between the San Francisco Giants and Colorado Rockies has been well documented over the past four seasons. Apparently it's not about to die down anytime soon, either, as Giants TV analyst Mike Krukow went on KNBR radio and revealed his suspicions that the Rockies and Troy Tulowitzki might be stealing signs, which he believes would explain the former all-star's sizzling start at the plate.
"I swear he's getting signs," Krukow said on the KNBR morning show. "There is no way you can hit like that, for this long. I mean, if you hit .571, that's for a weekend or a week. But you don't do it for six weeks. That's insane."
Just to be clear, Tulowitzki was hitting .552 at home and .389 overall heading into Wednesday's game against San Francisco. If he was hitting .571 overall, the accusations would be much crazier at this point.
That said, the splits are difficult to ignore. Tulowitzki's hitting only .247 on the road, which is enough to make a lot of people wonder, especially a 14-year pitching veteran like Krukow.
"When we saw him, he was never off his back leg, he was never fooled," Krukow said. "Not one time was he reaching out or going after something in the dirt. Whatever speed you threw at him, he was on it.
"That kind of gets you thinking. If you can get away with it, I guess it's legal. I'm not saying that he's doing anything, I'm not throwing it out there ... kind of, sort of, kind of."
Oh, Krukow was most definitely throwing it out there. No sense dancing around that. But if Tulowitzki is stealing signs or getting help at home, it wouldn't be the first time it's happened and it won't be the last. Teams and players are always looking for that competitive advantage, and though it may be against the unwritten rules of baseball, there's nothing in the rulebook saying you can't attempt to decode or read what the other team is doing to help your own cause.
Tulowitzki elected not to comment on Krukow's accusations prior to Wednesday's game at Coors Field. Rockies manager Walt Weiss, on the other hand, had a little fun with them.
“My response is that we do it all,” Weiss said with wry smile and a laugh. “We have a light bulb on the scoreboard we flash. Keep an eye on Dinger, he’s involved. We switch out the baseballs, we have the umpires in on it.
“I love it when teams talk about that. I think it’s great. I think it just feeds the beast. I’m not going to single anybody out, but I love when other teams start making those types of accusations.”
Could you imagine If Dinger's purpose all of these years wasn't just to distract pitchers and annoy fans, but to steal signs? How brilliant would that be? And also, how troubling would it be that the Rockies haven't enjoyed more success with Dinger working incognito?
Anyway, all this really amounts to is another small chapter in a four-year war of words. It all really started in Sept. of 2010, when Tim Lincecum was caught on television saying "juiced ball" after receiving a new baseball from the umpire. That led to accusations, most notably from Giants Hall of Fame radio voice Jon Miller, that Colorado would switch baseballs stored in the MLB-approved humidor to non-humidor balls when they needed to score runs.
MLB responded by changing the process in which humidor baseballs were handled prior to gametime, which included an MLB employee overseeing the removal of the baseballs and sitting nearby when they're brought to the field.
Whether or not the Rockies actually attempted to switch baseballs was never proven, but all questions were basically removed at that point in time. Anything that's been said since then should be filed away as an attempt to play mind games, which may have been Krukow's sole purpose on Wednesday. If so, that's just as legal as lifting signs, so let's just call it even and call it a day.
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