The New York Yankees had a couple of early April series against their arch-rivals the Boston Red Sox. Due to the cold weather in the Northeast at the start of the season, pitchers may have some trouble getting a grip on the ball.
On April 10th, Pineda pitched six strong innings for the Yankees in the Bronx. In the fourth inning of that game, Boston's manager John Farrell became aware that Pineda had pine tar on his hand, but did not protest to the umpires. When questioned about the incident, Pineda insisted that it was dirt on the palm of his right hand.
Less than a fortnight later, Pineda was again pitching against the Bo-Sox. Pineda claims that he could not feel the ball and he did not want to hit anybody, so he put on pine tar. Yet instead of hiding the banned substance, Pineda smeared some pine tar on his neck, and was thrown out in the second inning. This time Pineda admitted that it was pine tar.
MLB rule 8.02 states that a pitcher may not "apply a foreign substance of any kind to the ball." Rule 8.02 (b) states a pitcher may not "have on his person, or in his possession, any foreign substance. For such infraction of this section (b) the penalty shall be immediate ejection from the game.
Some Major League Baseball players sounded somewhat sympathetic to using something to get a grip in adverse weather (cold, extreme humidity). But reactions to Pineda's application of pine tar to his neck were less understanding as it was so obvious.
What do you think?