Pine Tar in the MLB: Cheating or Outdated Rule?
There is much speculation to whether or not Pine tar should be allowed in the MLB for use of the pitchers. After the game Wednesday night (4-23-14) between the Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees, the pitcher for the Yankees, Michael Pineda was said to be “doctoring” the ball with Pine Tar that was found on his neck. The Manager for the Red Sox, John Farrell alerted the umpires that there was a foreign substance on his neck, after the umpires realized that it was Pine Tar, they ejected Pineda.
Pitchers usually use some type of substance that is usually chalk to allow them to get a better grip on the ball, especially on frigid nights like the one on Wednesday night. Chalk is allowed in the MLB for use of the pitchers, but the pitchers usually say that the chalk really doesn’t do much unless there is some type of moisture. Pine tar on the other hand, is relatively sticky and will allow the players to get a firm grip on the ball.
Pitchers in the Major League do this kind of stuff all the time but they don’t get caught, some people view it as doctoring the ball and using foreign substances to change the trajectory of the ball after it leaves the pitchers hands, but Pine Tar allows the pitcher to get a nice firm grip so he can really get the ball where he wants, the Tar is put on his hands, not the ball itself so it is not doctoring the ball in any way, shape, or form.
Farrell on whether Pineda will use Pine Tar again tonight, (night of the game, some hours before) said, “I would expect that if it’s used, it will be more discreet than last time.”
To me that sounds like a warning, that if your’e gonna use it, be more discreet about it, don’t be as obvious, I personally believe that the tar is more of a benefit to everyone rather than cheating or doctoring the ball, it allows the pitcher to have more control therefore resulting in less risk of injuries and a more efficient game.
Personally I view it as a rule that isn’t really something that should be illegal, it’s better because it’s safer.
Leave a comment below with your thoughts.