NEW YORK -- Michael Pineda admitted that yes, there was a substance on the palm of his pitching hand in the third inning of Thursday's game against the Red Sox, in which he pitched six-plus, one-run innings and earned his first win as a Yankee.
However, he said the substance was nothing more sinister than what is found naturally on baseball diamonds all over the world.
"It's dirt," he said.
“Yeah. Between the innings, I’m sweating too much on my hand. I’m putting dirt [on it].”
Told that some TV commentators had opined that it was pine tar, which is banned for use by pitchers under the rules, Pineda smiled.
“I don’t use pine tar,” he said. “It’s dirt. I’m sweating on my hand too much in between innings.”
Asked if he had been cautioned by the umpires to clean off his hand --- the "substance" had disappeared the next inning -- Pineda said, "No. Nobody asked me. Nobody said nothing about that.”
Crew chief Brian O'Nora confirmed to a pool reporter that the Red Sox never lodged a complaint with him about Pineda. So we'll have to take Pineda at his word.
It was dirt.