Blog Entry

Something to remember: C.J. Wilson loves to hit

Posted on: June 16, 2011 5:51 pm
Edited on: June 16, 2011 9:44 pm
This week at Yankee Stadium, C.J. Wilson hit more home runs than he allowed.

Might be worth remembering come November.

First, because Wilson might be the top free-agent pitcher available when this season ends (and he certainly didn't hurt his status by holding the Yankees to two runs in eight innings). Second, because the Rangers' left-hander really seemed to enjoy that home run he hit -- even if it was in batting practice.

This guy loves to hit.

"I saw Rick Ankiel before '01 [when Ankiel was a pitcher], and I thought I brought a lot of the same stuff to the table," Wilson said. "I never wanted to pitch until I got drafted."

Does that mean Wilson will want to sign with a National League team, so he could at least hit a few times a game?

You're going to have to draw your own conclusions on that one, because he wouldn't go there.

"I'm not going to answer that question," Wilson said.

He would answer a question about pitching under National League rules, which he won't get to do this weekend against the Braves -- his next start is Tuesday at home against the Astros -- but will get to do on June 28 in Houston.

"It's fun, and it's easier pitching in the National League," Wilson said. "You've got the pitcher hitting, and you've got the eighth-place hitter. We've put lineups out there with Mitch Moreland hitting eighth. C'mon, Mitch Moreland can hit a ball 500 feet.

"This is the way the game started, with pitchers hitting. It's more fun. If I got 50-60 at-bats during a season, that'd be great."

Instead, Wilson has five at-bats in his career, plus one against the Giants in the World Series. He's still looking for his first hit.

But he did hit that home run -- a second-deck home run -- in batting practice on Tuesday.

"It's OK, but it's 318 down the line," Wilson said. "It's easy to hit a home run here -- really easy, extremely easy."

But the Yankees, who lead the majors with 103 home runs (and have hit 62 in 40 home games), didn't reach the seats against Wilson. He became just the third opposing pitcher in the new Yankee Stadium history (since 2009) to go eight innings without allowing a home run.

Felix Hernandez and Cliff Lee each did it twice.

One more thing to remember come November: Wilson isn't a big fan of the Yankee Stadium mound.

"It's terrible," he said earlier this week. "It's like clay and silt."

Oh, and one last thing to remember: CC Sabathia loves hitting, too. He loved the National League. And when it was the American League Yankees who made by far the biggest offer when Sabathia was a free agent in the winter of 2008-09, Sabathia went to the league where he couldn't hit regularly.


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