Friday, September 18, 2015


Here at Bleeding Yankee Blue, we love Dellin Betances. I myself on several occasions have called him a Hometown Hero. The kid from New York, living out the dream of every young baseball fan who grew up here... playing for the New York Yankees. And he is doing an incredible job.

As I write this, today September 17th, it marks the date that Betances threw his 131st strikeout of the season, passing the great Mariano Rivera for most strikeouts by a Yankee reliever in a single season. If that wasn't impressive enough, Betances continues to be a dominate force in our bullpen. This season alone he has a 6 - 3 record, with a 1.43 ERA, 118 strikeouts, and has only allowed 15 runs. And none of that even mentions his presence on the field.

When he takes the mound, he commands respect. I've seen him pitch twice this season, and both times I was in complete awe. At 6'8", his built alone will make you pay attention. But it truly is his technique that is impressive. His knuckle curve pitch is beautiful. It behaves like a slider with a horizontal break, and even at the low to mid-80's, it seems to always perplex the batter. His four-seam fastball is just as impressive.

Simply put, I am an unapologetic Betances fangirl. I accept that. He has performed on the field in such a way that he deserves the support. And now he is also doing something fantastic off-field. Giving back to the community that he came from.

Betances donated baseball equipment to Youth Service League. YSL is a New York wide program, aimed to help children in the inner-city. Many of whom are at a financial disadvantage. It is run by volunteers. For children in many New York communities, these programs are a vital part in helping to keep our children active, engaged, and off of the streets. Betances happens to be an alum of the program.

Betances seems very humbled and grateful for the experience. It's a wonderful thing when an athlete can go back and do things like this for the community that helped bring them up. It's especially powerful in our inner-city communities where families are suffering financially. Betances, being the son of a New York City cabbie, understands this struggle, and wants to children to be able to continue   to participate in YSL, and programs like it.

I have a great amount of respect for players that dominate the field. Betances is no doubt one of those players. But there is something really, almost beautiful, about a player that reaches back to his roots and helps sow the seeds currently planted there. Betances is constantly finding reasons for me to wave my pom poms in his name. It's impressive.

P.S. Good work from our friend Brandon Steiner conducting this interview.

-Erica Morales BYB Senior Writer 
Twitter: @e_morales1804

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