Hiroki Kuroda won't be giving up his No. 18 jersey for Masahiro Tanaka in 2014, as the Yankees' newest addition will wear No. 19 in 2014. Ace pitchers in Japan are usually given No. 18, but Kuroda's seniority likely gives him the ability to keep his number over the rookie.
New York Yankees (@Yankees) January 24, 2014
If you needed a reminder that Chris Stewart is really, truly gone, this is it. I hope the Yankees have made sure that jersey was dry cleaned repeatedly. Can't have any possible contamination from the former owner infecting the Yankees' shiny new toy. What did Stewart think of Tanaka taking his old number?
Running out to buy a 19 jersey may seem like a good idea, but I urge some caution. Kuroda has been teetering on the verge of retirement for a couple seasons now and this could very well be his last in pinstripes. If 18 suddenly becomes available, I could see Tanaka wanting to switch. Maybe not, but buyer beware. Tanaka wore both 17 and 18 during his time in Japan.
Some other Yankees who wore #19 in the past include Dave Righetti, Ramiro Pena, Fritz Peterson, Bob Turley, Whitey Ford, Tyler Clippard, and Luis Sojo. What do you think of Tanaka's decision to go with #19?
Feel free to use this as your open thread for the night, as well.
- Yankees sign Masahiro Tanaka: Did the new posting system work?
- Yankees GIFs: Fond memories from the 2009 World Series, Game 2
- Brian Cashman: The Yankees' infield & bullpen questions are going to have to answer themselves
- Yankees sign Masahiro Tanaka: Alternative New York Post covers
- Gary Sanchez and Mason Williams ranked among MLB.com's Top 100 Prospects