Yankees pitcher Michael Pineda ejected for having pine tar on his neck

New York Yankees pitcher Michael Pineda was thrown out of last night’s game against the Boston Red Sox for having an illegal substance on his neck. It is believed that the illegal substance was pine tar.

Pine tar allows a pitcher to get a better grip on the ball. Grip is good. Baseball being baseball, hitters are allowed to use pine tar, pitchers are not. With that said, it’s kind of an unwritten rule that nothing will be said about a pitcher using pine tar when it’s cold, as long as they aren’t being obvious about using it. In cold weather, it’s harder to grip the ball. Pineda’s problem last night was that it wasn’t cold and he was being very obvious about it. He had it right on his neck for the world to see. Red Sox manager John Farrell asked the umpire to check Pineda’s neck and the rest was history.

The Red Sox went on to win the game 5-1.

As fate would have it, last night’s game was televised nationally on ESPN. I wouldn’t be surprised if someone from the four-letter network alerted the Red Sox about the pine tar on Pineda’s neck, knowing that the inspection and subsequent ejection would create lots of drama.

If there’s one thing ESPN likes is drama.

I’m not so sure it was Pineda’s fault. Once I saw a magician pull a quarter out from behind a young girl’s ear. Who was responsible for producing the quarter, the girl? I don’t think so. For all we know, a magician or a wizard could have put the pine tar on Pineda’s neck. I couldn’t help but notice that although the umpiring crew checked Pineda for foreign substances, they didn’t check the stands for wizards or magicians.

I guess we’ll never know.

So not only is A-Rod a cheat, he's a snitch

Looks like 60 Minutes will be worth checking out tomorrow night. From the Associated Press (via Yahoo! News):

Members of Alex Rodriguez’s inner circle obtained and leaked documents that implicated Ryan Braun and other players in using performance-enhancing drugs, “60 Minutes” reported Friday.

Citing unidentified sources, the CBS news show said the leak occurred in February, days after the Miami New Times published documents implicating the Yankees star in the Biogenesis investigation.

In the Miami New Times documents, the names of Braun and one of Rodriguez’s teammates, catcher Francisco Cervelli, are redacted. “60 Minutes” reports that members of Rodriguez’s camp obtained unredacted versions and leaked them to Yahoo! Sports.

Alex Rodriguez is just a terrible human being. Not only has he reportedly been using performance enhancers since he played in the minor leagues, he’s ratted out other players to the press. That’s just awful. Being a snitch is a lot worse than being a cheat.

I can’t imagine anyone being a fan of A-Rod. I actually feel sorry for Yankees fans. That’s an emotion I never thought I’d have for them. I still hate them, I just now also pity them.

2013 Topps Heritage Derek Jeter hand numbered mini card

I picked up a jumbo pack of 2013 Topps Heritage Baseball at Wal-Mart this past Sunday afternoon. After I got home that day, I opened the pack to see what I had. One of the cards I pulled was a tiny, micro version of a regular Derek Jeter card. It also had “062/100” written in what appeared to be blue ballpoint ink on the front of the card, to the right of Jeter’s head.

tiny-jeter

I put the card aside and didn’t think too much about it. I had recently purchased a hobby box of 2013 Topps Series 1 Baseball on eBay and pulled a number of mini cards from the packs. I think they were seeded 1:3 in the packs, but I may be wrong. Those mini cards were a bit different in that they didn’t mimic the regular sized cards in the series.

This Jeter card was just like the regular sized cards in the set, plus it had ballpoint ink writing on it.

I did some research and discovered that it is a special insert card. Each regular card in 2013 Topps Heritage Baseball has a parallel mini version limited to only 100 copies. Unlike other numbered parallel cards released by Topps which are machine stamped with a serial number, these cards were hand numbered.

I checked eBay and found out that card 031/100 went for $124.50.

I listed my card on eBay Sunday night with a starting bid of $20. It’s currently at $26. There’s also 13 people watching it. It should be interesting to see how much it ends up going for. Just my luck, it will end at $26 and turn out to be the lowest priced Derek Jeter mini card to go on eBay.

Update: The card ended up going for $102.50. Needless to say, I was quite pleased.

Derek Jeter is the reason MLB needs instant replay

The other night in a game between the New York Yankees and the Tampa Bay Rays, Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter cheated his way to first base by pretending that he was hit by a pitch. He tricked the umpire into thinking that he was injured by a ball that did not hit him.

There’s cheating and then there’s cheating. Pretending that you are injured is a punk move.

A trainer even came out onto the field to attend to Jeter’s phantom injury. The instant reply clearly showed that the ball never touched Jeter. It hit the end of his bat. He responded by moving around as though he was in agony.

Major League Baseball needs to come into the 21st century and introduce instant replay. With cheats like Derek Jeter, it’s a necessity. Furthermore, the league needs to come out and just ban cheating. If they can fine and suspend a player for fighting or taking steroids, they can surely do the same for blatant, obvious cheating.

This is one of the reasons people hate the New York Yankees

What would post-season, October baseball be without the New York Yankees benefiting from a “questionable” call? Seriously, this is just ridiculous. Umpire Phil Cuzzi was standing right there watching the ball land in fair territory and then bounce into the stands. It should have been a ground rule double. Instead, it was strike two for Minnesota Twins catcher Joe Maurer.

The score was tied 3-3 in the 11th inning with no outs.

Umpire Phil Cuzzi is no stranger to controversy. He has a track record of making controversial calls. He shouldn’t have been anywhere near this game, especially considering that he lives in New Jersey and likely has a bias when it comes to the New York Yankees. Is it a stretch to think that a guy who was born and raised in Newark probably grew up rooting for the Yankees?

I think not.

Seriously, this is a travesty. Because the first round of the playoffs is only five games long instead of the regular seven, blown calls like this one are even more egregious than normal. Coincidentally, the Yankees seems to always seem to be the ones benefiting from something like this.

The guy that would rather pee than stand for 'God Bless America' is suing the New York Yankees

new_york_yankees_logo-12559Last year Bradford Campeau-Laurion was ejected from a baseball game at Yankees stadium because he tried to leave his seat during the start of the seventh-inning stretch to use the restroom. The problem is that this is when the Yankees play God Bless America over the PA system. Fans are supposed to stand and show respect.

They are not supposed to go and relieve themselves.

A police officer stopped Campeau-Laurion and instructed him to return to his seat. Campeau-Laurion refused saying that he really had to go pee. When Campeau-Laurion tried to step around the officer, the officer grabbed Campeau-Laurion’s right arm and twisted it behind his back. A second officer grabbed Campeau-Laurion’s other arm and twisted it behind his back. They then marched Campeau-Laurion out of the stadium where one of the officers told him that if he didn’t like it, he should leave the country.

Bradford Campeau-Laurion is now suing the New York Yankees.

The police of course are disagreeing with Campeau-Laurion’s account of what happened.  According to them, Campeau-Laurion was a drunk that was standing on his seat and loudly cursing, “reeking of alcohol”.

If that were true, why didn’t the police arrest Campeau-Laurion?

Even if I didn’t hate the New York Yankees, I would side with Campeau-Laurion on this. The seventh-inning stretch is intended to be a time for fans to get up and, well, stretch. It’s not supposed to be a time for faux patriotism.