Masahiro Tanaka throws two perfect innings in spring debut

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Excellent news for the Yankees and their fans here, as right-hander Masahiro Tanaka threw two perfect innings this evening in his Grapefruit League debut against the Braves.

Tanaka struck out two batters and induced four weak groundballs. He topped out at 94 mph and threw 15 out of 19 pitches for strikes while exhibiting good control of his splitter. It’s worth noting that Tanaka got through his two innings so quickly that he finished his night by throwing some more pitches in the bullpen. You really couldn’t ask for much better.

Tanaka was diagnosed with a partial tear of the ulnar collateral ligament in his elbow last July, but he decided to rehab the elbow on the advice of doctors rather than have Tommy John surgery. He made it back for two starts in September and had a normal offseason, so the Yankees are planning on him being a part of their rotation this year. Who knows if his elbow will hold up, but tonight we can emphasize the positive. If healthy, Tanaka and Michael Pineda could really be something at the top of that rotation.

Adeiny Hechavarría rejoins Braves on one-year, $1 million deal

Adeiny Hechavarría
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On Thursday, ESPN’s Jeff Passan reported that the Braves and shortstop Adeiny Hechavarría reunited on a one-year, $1 million contract.

Hechavarría, 30, began the season with the Mets but was released in mid-August and joined the Braves shortly thereafter. He enjoyed more success in Atlanta, albeit in a smaller sample size. In aggregate, Hechavarría hit .241/.299/.443 with nine home runs and 33 RBI over 221 trips to the plate. More importantly, he provided versatility with above-average defense.

The Braves are banking on Hechavarría doing more of the same in 2020 as a backup infielder. He will spell Ozzie Albies, Dansby Swanson, Johan Camargo, and Austin Riley as needed.