Monday, September 15, 2014


Today's report on Masahiro Tanaka is positive, but it depends on who you read. The headlines are interesting.  I mean, overall, the big news for Tanaka is he pitched 5 scoreless innings, and that comes from several news outlets.  We'll demonstrate with 2 headlines:

Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News: Masahiro Tanaka one step closer to pitching for Yankees before season ends, throws 65 pitches in simulated game 

ESPN's headline: Masahiro Tanaka throws 5 innings

But it's interesting. Check out USA Today's headline: Masahiro Tanaka hit hard, but pitches five scoreless innings

Hit Hard? What does that mean? We're going with Chad Jennings and USA Today, because I want the real story.  Getting "hit hard" peaks my interest. Let's find out what happened:

"Tanaka pitched five scoreless innings in Monday's instructional league game. He struck out four, gave up six hits and was hit hard several times while playing with and against a group of mostly teenagers, including several of this year's international signings. 'Feels good,' he said. 'I feel alright.'"

It's a hard and honest report, and now the question is, what comes next?

Well, the big thing is we need to see how he feels.  If he feels good tomorrow, I will speculate right now that I bet he returns to the Yankees this week.  I'd like to speculate more and suggest maybe he turns to start this Sunday, because selfishly, I'm going to the game and I'd like to see him live. But again, that's just selfish speculation on my part... nothing more.

It's clear the Yankees want him back to help their club down the stretch, even though many Yankee fans have already written off the Yankees in 2014.  But with the recent energy of guys like Martin Prado and Chris Young, and some solid pitching lately from the likes of Shane Greene and Brandon McCarthy, it's the believers that are attempting to lead the charge here. You know I like that.  Maybe Tanaka helps, but remember, this return for Masahiro is not so much about the Yankees, it's about Tanaka.  I mean, as long as he feels good and doesn't need surgery in his comeback of 2014, hopefully he'll work out of it.  We'll just have to see, but I feel good about Tanaka, and I am looking forward to his return... whenever that will be.

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