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MLB absolves Mariano Rivera of alleged spitball

Video replays appeared to show Mariano Rivera spitting

Video replays appeared to show Mariano Rivera spitting on or near the ball during the 10th inning of Game 3. MLB officials investigated the incident, but cleared the Yankees' closer from any wrongdoing. Credit: screengrab

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Major League Baseball’s Department of Operations has investigated the available video and still photographs surrounding the “Mariano Rivera spitball” controversy, and has found no evidence that the Yankees’ closer actually spit on a baseball, an MLB spokesman said Tuesday.

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The controversy, sparked by the Angels blog “Halos Heaven,” concerned Rivera’s entry to Monday’s American League Championship Series Game 3. Fox video showed Rivera, after completing his warmup pitches, turning away from home plate and spitting toward the ball. However, the video didn’t make clear where the spit landed.

The commissioner’s office felt compelled to investigate, given the fury surrounding the accusation, yet the lack of a smoking gun essentially ended the query in a few hours -- short of new evidence surfacing.


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