Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Michael Pineda Is The Least Slick Dude In The History Of Baseball

(Courtesy of

I mean come on, dude.  You know we live in a world of HD television cameras, right?  Did you think you weren't going to be checked?  Did you think slapping it on the side of your neck was going to make it less noticeable than it would be on your hand?  Please don't tell me you're stupid enough to think that nobody would notice because you're darker skinned.

I almost don't want to know what Pineda's explanation for this is because there simply can't be one that's not completely and utterly idiotic.  He might as well have jogged back out on the mound in the 2nd with pine tar under his eyes like eye black and under his chin like a fake goatee.  Just next level mental midgetry right there.  Dude deserved to get ejected and he deserves all 10 games of the suspension he's probably going to get.

P.S.- When Gerry West touched his neck and said "that's pine tar", my mind flashed back to that episode of "The Fresh Prince" where Will pretends to be Ashley's father and the teacher calls him out for having a fake mustache.  I would have given Pineda a small sliver of props if he would have hit Davis with the "No it's not!" response and just stood there.

Keith Law Scouts Low-A Charleston

Keith Law was back on the scouting road earlier this week and once again he got the chance to check out one of the Yankee farm teams in action.  This time it was the Low-A Charleston RiverDogs and Law filed a scouting report post on some of the players he saw for ESPN yesterday.

The stars of the show were 2013 1st rounder Aaron Judge and fast-rising starting pitching prospect Luis Severino.  Severino dominated in this start (5.2 shutout innings, 8 Ks) and Law called his 3-pitch mix "impressive", praising him for his fastball command and late life and his plus changeup.  He was less enthusiastic about Severino's slider and said he has a lot of work to do on his mechanics, noting that Severino needs "some mechanical adjustments to reach his above-average starter ceiling."

Judge also had himself a day in Law's presence, going 2-2 with a triple and 2 walks.  Law liked what he saw in Judge's stance and swing mechanics, saying "for a guy with long arms and a little bit of a bat wrap he's still quite short to the ball, with good hip rotation and loft in his finish for line-drive power."

Law also had some quick takes on Abi Avelino and Gosuke Katoh.  You can check those out in the whole article here (Insider-only).

The Good And Bad Of Tanaka In Four At-Bats

(Courtesy of the AP)

(Originally published at IIATMS/TYA)

You wouldn't be wrong to call last night the worst of Masahiro Tanaka's 4 outings thus far.  He was uneven with his command at times, he gave up a few 2-out hits, and he gave up back-to-back solo home runs in the bottom of the 4th on 2 badly missed fastballs.  You would be wrong, however,  if you called last night's outing a bad one.  Despite the inconsistencies and homers, Tanaka was efficient with his pitch count and worked into the 8th, allowing only those 2 runs, striking out 7 while walking nobody, and picking up his 3rd win of the year.

The Red Sox got their first look at Tanaka and they had to walk away impressed.  He showcased all his pitches again, mixing them up at all different times in the count, he threw a lot of early strikes to work from ahead or even in the count and keep the guessing game going on their end, and he registered double digit swinging strikes again with an even dozen.  Tanaka was very, very good again, and I thought he showed what makes him special and legitimate and also what things he still has to learn about facing MLB hitters in his first 4 encounters with Boston's 2 best hitters.

Game 20 Wrap-Up: NYY 9 BOS 3

(Courtesy of the AP)

Well that was fun, huh?  Some more excellent work by Masahiro Tanaka, a thorough beatdown of Jon Lester, a multi-hit homecoming for Jacoby Ellsbury, and a comfortable series-opening victory for the boys in pinstripes.  I'll take that for each game in the rest of this series, thank you very much.

Game Notes:

- It was clear from the get go that Lester didn't have it last night.  He gave up a leadoff triple to Ellsbury, 2 straight hits to Derek Jeter and Carlos Beltran, and it was 2-0 Yanks 3 batters into the game.

- They let him off the hook with a double play ball in the 2nd, but got right back to work in the 3rd with a trio of doubles by Soriano, Teix (yay!), and Big Mac to make it 4-0.

- Tanaka was stellar again and showed no ill effects of pitching in the big setting.  He made 2 mistakes to David Ortiz and Mike Napoli in the bottom of the 4th on misplaced sinkers that they hit for home runs, otherwise he was money.

- Those 2 runs didn't end up amounting to much for Boston.  A 2-out, 4-run rally in the 5th knocked Lester out and put the game out of reach.

- Just for good measure, Carlos Beltran smacked a solo shot to make it 9-2 in the 8th.  Dellin Betances gave up a meaningless run in a mop-up 9th.