Michael Pineda, Pine Tar And The Unwritten Rules Of Baseball

Yankees pitcher Michael Pineda could be facing suspension from MLB for allegedly using pine tar while pitching.

Michael Pineda, Pine Tar And The Unwritten Rules Of Baseball
USA Today / Bob DeChiara

Yankees pitcher Michael Pineda is likely facing a suspension after a sticky substance thought to be pine tar was found on his neck Wednesday night.

Pineda was ejected from the game. It's the second time in as many starts for the pitcher that a peculiar "substance" appeared to be on a part of his body. (Via New York Daily News

Although in the eyes of Major League Baseball pine tar is illegal for pitchers to use, should it really be outlawed? Pitchers reportedly use it in cold-weather games to get better control of the ball. 

"Every catcher in the big leagues has pine tar on his shin guards. So, when the pitcher needs some pine tar, he rubs it on his shin guard and throws it back to the pitcher." (Via ESPN

"I'd much rather have a guy on the mound throwing strikes and being accurate than having the ball slip out of his hands and head for my chin."

​"Yeah, most guys think it's a stupid rule, but it is a rule. No foreign substance." (Via CBS

Rule 8.02 in the official MLB rulebook states pitchers shall not "​Have on his person, or in his possession, any foreign substance." Foreign substances used by pitchers are seen as unfair competitive advantages. (Via MLB

But, headlines across the Internet seem to find Pineda guiltier of not being discreet about the whole thing than of using the actual substance. (Via Bleacher ReportDeadspinSporting NewsUSA TodayThe Boston Globe

Christopher Gasper from The Boston Globe writes: "Pineda's crime isn't really using pine tar. ... It's using it so blatantly that the Red Sox were forced to say something about it."

And a writer for Bleacher Report says: "Michael, Michael, Michael. If you're going to use pine tar, at least put it in the same place most pitchers do: On the inside of your belt  in the spot where you hitch up your pants when you need a little something extra." 

A suspension for Pineda is expected to come down this week.