joe maddon-greg brown-tom fornelli Apr 21, 2018; Denver, CO, USA; Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon (70) sits in the dugout prior to the first inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Russell Lansford-USA TODAY Sports

Cubs manager Joe Maddon has made quite clear how he feels about the controversy surrounding Anthony Rizzo’s slide into home plate on Monday. In Maddon’s mind, Rizzo’s slide directly at the legs of Pirates catcher Elias Diaz was clean, there was no interference on the play, and the whole ordeal was entirely the fault of Diaz, who should have been further out in front of the plate.

To some observers, such as CBS Sports writer Tom Fornelli, Maddon’s defense of Rizzo (even after MLB declared that the play was interference) seemed somewhat less than reasonable. On Tuesday, Fornelli mocked the manager on Twitter with a clearly fake quote about Diaz digging a trench in front of home plate to protect himself from the baserunner.

It probably should have been clear from Fornelli’s tweet that Maddon did not actually suggest digging a trench in front of home plate because that would be ridiculous, but it turns out not everyone was in on the joke.

When Pirates play-by-play man Greg Brown discussed the Rizzo-Diaz incident on air Tuesday night, he quoted not only Maddon’s actual take on the situation but also Fornelli’s fake version. Here’s a clip:

On Twitter, Fornelli appeared quite excited that he had tricked a major league broadcaster into believing a transparently fake quote.

Brown does not seem to have acknowledged his mistake [Update: He later did.], but the Cubs’ official Twitter account seemed to get a kick out of it.

Between this situation and Chris Long making half the internet believe he thought hockey players were wimps, it’s really about time for the internet to get a sarcasm font.

About Alex Putterman

Alex is a writer and editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. He has written for The Atlantic, VICE Sports,, and more. He is a proud alum of Northwestern University and The Daily Northwestern. You can find him on Twitter @AlexPutterman.