Yanks’ Michael Pineda Pitches With Suspicious Substance (Possibly Pine Tar) on Hand vs. Red Sox (Photo)
Yankees starting pitcher Michael Pineda pitched six innings of one-run ball during a 4-1 victory over the Boston Red Sox on Thursday, allowing only four hits and two walks while striking out seven.
That performance should have people talking about Pineda’s successful return to the Majors after a two-year hiatus, but that hasn’t been the case thanks to the fishy substance seen on the 25-year-old righty’s pitching hand during the early innings of the game.
Here is some photographic evidence:
According to reports, the substance on Pineda’s hand was brought to the attention of Red Sox manager John Farrell in the fourth inning, but before the Yankees’ starter came out for the fifth inning, his hand had been wiped clean. Coincidentally, all four of Boston’s hits against Pineda came after the pine tar had been removed, including Daniel Nava‘s solo homer in the seventh and Xander Bogaerts‘ subsequent single, which ended Pineda’s night.
Surprisingly, the Red Sox players didn’t seem too concerned about the incident, including pitcher Clay Buchholz, who was accused of using an illegal substance nearly one year ago during a game against the Toronto Blue Jays.
Here’s what he had to say when asked whether he thought Pineda’s dirty hand was an issue:
“No, especially on cold windy nights, it’s tough to get a grip on the baseball,” Buchholz said. “I had that instance last year in Toronto, people said I had stuff all over my body you can use — rosin, water, the whole sunscreen stuff, whatever. I’d rather have a grip on the baseball and semi-know where it’s going [than] have no grip and get somebody hurt.
“As hard as [Pineda] was throwing early, ain’t no one want to get hit, especially around the head. I don’t think any organization would want to do anything about it. Scuffing the ball is one thing, if you’re actually creating more control over where you want to throw it, giving you any type of edge. But as long as I’ve been around, I haven’t seen sticky substance give anyone an edge. If it gives them an edge, that’s another thing.”
Buchholz may not care about the substance, but everyone else does, including the MLB, who will likely look into this incident.
As for Pineda’s side of the story, he claims it was only dirt. We all know that’s probably not true. The real question is, can anyone prove it?
Hat Tip – [ESPN]