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Tigers closer Jose Valverde denies throwing spitball against Reds
CHICAGO (AP) ' Detroit Tigers closer Jose Valverde denies throwing spitball in the ninth inning of Sunday night's 7-6 win over the Cincinnati Reds.
An internet video showed Valverde putting his glove to his mouth with the ball in it before delivering a 1-2 pitch to Reds catcher Devin Mesoraco. Mesoraco swung and missed at the 94-mile per hour fastball.
Valverde said he was wiping sweat from his face with his glove, not spitting on the ball. He said he saw the video and anticipated the media's reaction, laughing as a group of reporters approached before the Tigers played the Cubs on Monday.
Valverde is 3-1 with 12 saves in 15 chances. He has a 3.91 ERA.
He said he has not been contacted by Major League Baseball.