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Masahiro Tanaka feels cheated by the Astros


As pitchers and catchers report this week and position players begin appearing in camp the week after, expect a lot of them to be asked about the sign-stealing scandal that has defined the 2019-2020 offseason. That’s particularly the case for players on teams who faced the Astros in 2017.

Today the player talking was Masahiro Tanaka who was asked if he feels like the Yankees were cheated out of the 2017 World Series by the Houston Astros. You’ll recall, of course, that Tanaka’s Yankees lost to the Astros in a seven-game ALCS that year, when the Astros were almost certainly stealing signs.

Tanaka: “Yeah, I do feel that way . . . It’s a competition and the competition should be a fair competition,” Tanaka said. He added:

“You never know what would have happened, but at the same time you can say that what happened might not have happened. I don’t know if mad is the right word, but it’s something that’s out of the rules. They’re not, obviously, abiding by the rules.”

I’m sure he won’t be the last guy asked that in the next couple of weeks. I’m sure he won’t be the last guy to answer along those lines.

Mets scratch Jacob deGrom due to neck tightness

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PHILADELPHIA — The New York Mets have scratched two-time NL Cy Young Award winner Jacob deGrom from his start against the Phillies on Friday.

DeGrom says he has neck tightness, but “everything is fine structurally” and he doesn’t plan to go on the injury list. The right-hander felt soreness playing catch after his last start. He threw from the mound Thursday and thought he could still pitch the opener of a three-game series in Philadelphia but will skip the outing as a precaution.

DeGrom is 2-0 with a 2.45 ERA in four starts this season.