Joe's Nail File

baseballThe recent controversy surrounding Kenny Rogers and this recent email about Dennis Eckersley cheating in the 1989 ALCS got me thinking about Joe Niekro. He played 22 season in the Major Leagues, but I only remember him for one incident in 1987. On August 3, 1987, he was ejected for having a nail file on the mound.

Niekro claimed he had been filing his nails in the dugout and stuck the file in his back pocket when the inning started and had not been doctoring baseballs. I remember this contorversy well and that he was suspended for ten days.

Niekro suffered a brain aneurysm on Thursday and passed away yesterday at the age of 61. It's strange, but I don't think Joe Niekro crossed my mind once since the 80s until I thought about pitchers caught trying to cheat after Kenny Rogers was ordered to wash his hands.


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