Ex-Angels staffer: Cole, others doctored balls

1:42 AM ET

A revealing text message from star pitcher Gerrit Cole has been submitted as evidence in Brian Harkins’ quest to prove he was unfairly made a scapegoat when the Los Angeles Angels fired him as their clubhouse attendant for supplying ball-doctoring substances to pitchers.

The message — dated Jan. 17, 2019 — was filed in Orange County (California) Superior Court on Thursday as opposition to a request to dismiss the original lawsuit submitted by Harkins’ attorneys in August.

“Hey Bubba, it’s Gerrit Cole,” the text reads. “I was wondering if you could help me out with this sticky situation [winky face emoji]. We don’t see you until May, but we have some road games in April that are in cold weather places. The stuff I had last year seizes up when it gets cold …”

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Harkins was fired last March, ending a nearly four-decade run with the Angels, after the organization was informed by Major League Baseball that he was providing pitchers with an illegal blend of rosin and pine tar, a violation of a rule that had never been strictly enforced.

Harkins’ attorneys, Daniel Rasmussen and Matthew Brown, filed suit against the Angels

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