MLB: New York Mets at Chicago Cubs

New York Mets closer Edwin Díaz was ejected for "sticky stuff" prior to pitching the bottom of the ninth against the Chicago Cubs on Sunday night at Wrigley Field. Díaz's ejection for the use of a banned grip-enhancing substance carries with it an automatic 10-game suspension, pending any appeal. 

MLB announced Monday that Díaz, indeed, has been suspended for 10 games. If he does not appeal, he will be eligible to return on July 6 vs. the Pirates.

As Díaz took the field to warm up before facing the Cubs in the bottom of the ninth, second-base umpire Brian Walsh performed the routine inspection of the pitcher's hand and glove. Apparently concerned with what he found, Walsh summoned the remaining members of the umpiring crew to perform their own inspections and discuss. After that broader inspection and hearing from Díaz, third-base umpire and crew chief Vic Carapazza signaled that he was ejected from the game. 

Here's a look at the entire sequence: 

And the relevant screen-grab: 

Díaz was replaced by right-hander Drew Smith. He and Jake Diekman combined for a scoreless ninth to secure the 5-2 Mets win. 

"I think it's the same. They always check me, they let me pitch," Díaz told reporters after the game. "I will keep using the same thing because they didn't find anything on my glove, my hat, my belt."

Carapazza told a pool reporter that Díaz's hand was "extremely sticky" and "discolored." "It definitely wasn't rosin and sweat," the umpire said, according to's Anthony DiComo. "We've checked thousands of these. I know what that feeling is."

Pitchers tend to use grip-enhancing substances to improve their control as well as improve their spin rates. The league first instituted the current guidelines against grip-enhancers during June of the 2021 season as a means of curbing the rampant usage of Spider Tack, pine tar, and similar adhesives. In spring training of 2023, MLB signaled that it would step up enforcement of the rules limiting grip-enhancing substances and the frequency of checks such as the one that ensnared Díaz on Sunday night. The aforementioned Smith and then-Met Max Scherzer were both suspended last year for overuse of sticky stuff.

Díaz this season has pitched to a 4.70 ERA in 23 appearances with 33 strikeouts and seven walks in 23 innings. This season marks Díaz's comeback from a knee injury suffered during the World Baseball Classic that cost him all of 2023.