NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Orioles center fielder Adam Jones isn’t buying into all the Masahiro Tanaka hype.
To him, the pitcher is just another guy on the mound that he’s trying to get a hit against.
“Why don’t you ask Tanaka about me?” the three-time All-Star told Newsday on Tuesday. “I’m the one who’s been over here in the major leagues for a while. Congratulations, he did it over there. Don’t make it like he’s the dirtiest guy in the world. He was 24-0 — in Japan.”
Jones got his chance against the Japanese phenom on Wednesday night when Tanaka made his Yankee Stadium debut against Baltimore.
And he didn’t exactly light the 25-year-old up.
Tanaka struck Jones out twice, though the Orioles’ cleanup hitter did hit a single in his three at-bats against the rookie.
After the game, a 5-4 Orioles win, the three-time Gold Glove Award winner again wondered what all the fuss is about.
“Am I (supposed) to go home and say I faced Tanaka tonight?” Jones told the newspaper on Wednesday. “Just go throw a party that I faced Tanaka? It’s another pitcher. Another pitcher in the rotation. Nothing special to me. It’s just another guy that we have to go through to get to where we want to be.”
Tanaka, who beat the Blue Jays last week in his major-league debut, was again impressive on Wednesday night. But the three-run homer that he surrendered to Jonathan Schoop in the second inning cost him a chance to win his second straight decision.
Tanaka allowed three runs on seven hits in seven innings, striking out 10 and walking one.
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