MLB investigating homophobic message sent from Derek Holland’s Twitter account

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According to Janie McCauley of the Associated Press, Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said earlier this evening that MLB is investigating a homophobic message sent from Derek Holland’s Twitter account to a heckler last night.

The tweet, which has since been deleted, was posted during the second game of yesterday’s doubleheader against the Angels in which Holland allowed seven runs over 6 2/3 innings as part of an 8-7 win. MLB prohibits players from using social media 30 minutes before a game or during a game.

Holland told Keith Whitmire of FOXSportsSouthwest.com that his fiancee has access to his Twitter account, but claims that the offensive message was the result of a hacker.

“It’s obvious it was not me,” Holland said. “It was during the game, for one. And for two, I’m in the dugout cheering my teammates on. Why would I say that anyway to begin with?”

“It’s definitely a hacker,” Holland said. “Obviously my fiancée can get into it, but trust me, she’s not like that. She’s one of the nicest people in the world.”

It’s not clear when MLB’s investigation will be complete, but Daniels called it a “serious issue” and an “unacceptable term to use.” The tweet was posted less than two weeks after Blue Jays shortstop Yunel Escobar was suspended three games for displaying a homophobic slur written in Spanish on his eye black.

Masahiro Tanaka to throw off a mound this weekend

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Earlier this month Yankees starter Masahiro Tanaka strained both of his hamstrings while running the bases in an interleague game against the Mets and was sent to the 10-day DL. Today it was announced that the beginning of the end of most DL stints for pitchers — throwing off of a mound — is in Tanaka’s immediate future.

Tanaka is scheduled to throw off a mound Sunday, which will be his first real (well, fake real) pitching action since the June 9th injury. Assuming the session goes well, Tanaka is expected to return to the Yankees’ starting rotation sometime in early-to-mid July. With the All-Star break coming the week of July 16, it would not be hard to imagine the Yankees giving him a few extra days to get right.

Tanaka is 7-2 with a 4.58 ERA and a K/BB ratio of 73/19 in 72.2 innings on the season.