Martin will welcome Kuroda to Bronx
Good stuff from Anthony McCarron in today’s New York Daily News on new Yankees right-hander Hiroki Kuroda. McCarron reached Bombers catcher Russell Martin, who offered good reviews of their time together with the Dodgers and said that he’s excited to have Kuroda as a batterymate again.
“He can pitch, man,” Martin said in a recent telephone interview. “When he’s really on, his splitty is on. It gets him out of trouble. He can throw his fastball at 94 or 95 (miles per hour), though he’s mostly at 92 or 93, so it’s impressive. His slider is different, a really short break. It’s not a strikeout pitch, but it gets a lot of balls off the end of the bat, and his splitty is nasty against lefties or righties.”
Martin mentions to McCarron that in 2008, the Dodgers had Kuroda wear an Elvis Presley outfit to take part in an ‘American Idol’-themed rookie hazing.
“He performed in front of all the guys and embraced it,” Martin said, chuckling at the memory. “He was a veteran from Japan, but he put his ego behind him and had fun with it. I don’t know if he knew all the lyrics, but he got after it.
“That’s who he is — quiet at first, then you get to know him and he’s hilarious and then on the mound it’s total focus and concentration. He was a great teammate, I love that guy and I was extremely happy that we’ve got him now.”