Brandon Kintzler wants to clear his name.
After the 34-year-old reliever was traded from the Washington Nationals to the Chicago Cubs on Tuesday, a report surfaced claiming he was dealt because he spread rumors about his former team having a dysfunctional clubhouse.
Kintzler wasn't impressed with the report and addressed it after tossing 1 1/3 scoreless innings in his Cubs debut Wednesday against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
"I don’t know where that came from," Kintzler said, according to Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times. "I don’t want my character being questioned.
"I work hard to be a very good teammate," he added. "That’s something I’ve learned coming up, from Trevor Hoffman, always worry about being a good teammate. I always take that serious. So when I got questioned about it, I’m going to have to clear my name and make sure that everyone knows I wasn’t part of that."
Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports broke a story Monday stating Washington's clubhouse was "a mess," citing a source (which was corroborated by three others).
Kintzler admitted he had no idea what led the Nationals to trade him and added that he's never spoken to Passan.
"I've never talked to that Jeff Passan guy in my life, so that's an interesting accusation," Kintzler told 106.7 The Fan. "I know for a fact that someone got him to admit that his source was not a player, so it wasn't me. I've never talked to that guy in my life."
Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein said Wednesday on ESPN Radio that Passan called him to say he had never spoken with Kintzler, either on or off the record.
"That’s cool of that guy, the fact that he wanted to go out there and set it clear for me," Kintzler said. "It affected a lot of people I’m sure."