Athletes can get creative with their celebrations, and one college baseball player really ate his. During the first round of the AAC Tournament, East Carolina pitcher Josh Grosz was ejected for giving teammate Jacob Starling a sandwich on his way to the dugout after hitting a home run.
The NCAA does not allow props on the field, and it seems food items are included.
It happened on Tuesday as the top-seeded Pirates were taking on the South Florida Bulls. ECU was down 2-0 early in the game but Starling got the scoring going for his team by sending the ball over left field fence. As the Pirates second baseman headed back to the dugout and high-fived his teammates, Grosz handed him a sandwich.
Here is a video that shows the food delivery, at the front of the high five scrum as Starling first met his teammates on his way back to the dugout:
It happened quickly, but the home plate umpire caught it and did not let it slide. Grosz was ejected from the game, which means he will also miss ECU's next contest -- one in which he would've been a starter.
"That's the new rules, I guess. No fun baseball," ECU head coach Cliff Godwin told reporters.
Cliff Godwin said postgame Josh Grosz was ejected because a sandwich is considered a celebratory prop.— Stephen Igoe (@StephenIgoe) May 23, 2023
He will be suspended for one game as well, so he was unavailable out of the bullpen today and out tomorrow.
"That's the new rules, I guess. No fun baseball."
The Pirates swept USF in Tampa last weekend and were able to claim the AAC regular season championship. ECU -- ranked No. 15 nationally -- seemed in control of Tuesday's, but USF scored six runs in the top of the ninth. Eventually, the No. 8 seed Bulls came out victorious with a 12-11 result in extra innings. They will now get a rest day and advance to a winner's bracket contest against No. 4 UCF on Thursday.
Meanwhile, Tuesday's loss put the Pirates in a less-than-ideal situation. Their next outing is an elimination game against No. 5 seed Cincinnati on Wednesday. They will have to win at least their next two games for a shot of hosting during the NCAA Regionals, which start on June 2.