Tanaka's second bullpen 'very impressive'

February, 18, 2014
Feb 18
5:11
PM ET


TAMPA, Fla. -- Yankee catcher John Ryan Murphy had the best seat in Tampa for Masahiro Tanaka's second bullpen session. Crouching behind home plate, Murphy thought Tanaka's 35 pitcher were "very impressive."

“What surprised me was the effort level looked minimal and it was coming out really good,” Murphy said.

Tanaka throws six pitches (fastball, splitter, slider, curveball, cutter and change) so Murphy, Joe Girardi and an interpreter discussed how to have signal for all of them.

"You need a lot of fingers," Girardi said.

With the media surrounding Tanaka's every move once again, Murphy -- who used to be known as J.R. and is trying to win the backup catcher's job -- enjoyed the experience.

“All the hype, obviously, with him coming over here," Murphy said. "It was a neat experience. It was fun.”

The same for Tanaka, he was quizzed on what he has enjoyed most so far as a Yankee. He said it was his bullpens. "Because I love to throw.” Tanaka said.

Ellsbury
Ellsbury
LIKING HIS PINSTRIPES: Jacoby Ellsbury showed up on Wednesday and said he likes the feel of his new uniform.

"I did a shoot for Nike the other day, they sent down the official jersey and pants," Ellsbury said. "First time putting all that on a couple days ago. It felt good. Obviously looks a little different, but that’s something I was looking forward to. Something I was excited about. This team has a great chance to win and play deep into October."

As for the reception from Red Sox and Yankees fans, it has been fine.

"It’s been really good," Ellsbury said. "At different sporting events, Red Sox fans come up to me and thank me for the time in Boston. It’s really been all positive. And New York fans are very excited for me to be here, Went to a deli, Red Sox fan gave me a free breakfast this morning, down here in Tampa, so there’s still the love there. It’s nice to see. I'm excited to start this second chapter."

TEX GOES TO BAT FOR LONG: On with Michael Kay and Don La Greca on ESPN New York 98.7 FM, Mark Teixeira said he noticed that Robinson Cano didn't always run hard to first, but it was nothing shocking.

"No one is perfect," Teixeira said. "There is not a perfect player out there. We noticed it and we noticed the fans noticing it. Robbie did a lot of amazing things. That was one thing that Kevin talked about. I think what Kevin's point was and, listen, we all love Kevin. Kevin stands up for us as much as anybody, but Kevin's point was, 'Don't let them talk about that.' That is something easy."

Teixeira added, "It wasn't a huge deal in the clubhouse, but we did notice it."
Andrew Marchand is a senior writer for ESPNNewYork. He also regularly contributes to SportsCenter, Baseball Tonight, ESPNews, ESPN New York 98.7 FM and ESPN Radio. He joined ESPN in 2007 after nine years at the New York Post. Follow Andrew on Twitter »

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TEAM LEADERS

WINS LEADER
Masahiro Tanaka
WINS ERA SO IP
12 2.51 135 129
OTHER LEADERS
BAJ. Ellsbury .271
HRM. Teixeira 21
RBIJ. Ellsbury 70
RB. Gardner 82
OPSB. Gardner .752
ERAH. Kuroda 3.77
SOH. Kuroda 137