Michael Pineda ejected in second inning for pine tar on neck, facing a 10-game suspension

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Yankees starter Michael Pineda was very clearly using pine tar to get a better grip on his pitches during an April 10 start against the rival Red Sox.

He tried it again in his start Wednesday night at a blustery Fenway Park and got caught red-handed.

Umpire Gerry Davis ejected Pineda in the bottom of the second inning after closely examining — even touching his finger to — a large brown streak on the big right-hander’s neck. Here’s an image of that odd scene from beat reporter Jason Mastrodonato of the Springfield Republican and MassLive.com:

source:

David Phelps took over for Pineda, who now faces a 10-game suspension. Including his results from Wednesday night, the 25-year-old owns a 1.83 ERA and 1.02 WHIP in 19 2/3 innings this season.

We’ve discussed on this blog before how common it is for pitchers to use pine tar or sunscreen or some sort of sticky substance to help with grip on cold days. But most do it with a level of secrecy.

Former major leaguer Gabe Kapler put it nicely in this tweet Wednesday night …

Dodgers-Cubs game was postponed by rain and faulty lighting

Associated Press
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Last night’s Dodgers-Cubs game at Wrigley Field was postponed, but not just for rain. They had a lighting malfunction as well.

The storms rolled in a little after the game would’ve started, and the Cubs had the tarp on the field in preparation. It was a pretty big rain, though. Check this out:

Still, modern drainage is a wonderful thing, so the Cubs did have a chance to get this one in not too long after the rain stopped. But then something else happened: the lights on top of the right-field roof went dark:

(AP)

That got fixed, but then got un-fixed again soon after. By then there was another storm system getting ready to come in, so the Cubs just called it a night, citing the weather and “a partial power outage.” The lights are fixed this morning and the Dodgers and Cubs will play a split doubleheader starting today at 1PM Eastern.

In other news, it’s been almost 30 years since the first game with lights was played at Wrigley Field. The first effort at that was rained out, by the way, so they had to do it again the next day. It would seem that neither then nor now are the Baseball Gods terribly thrilled with night baseball on the North Side.