Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Prior to the start of camp, some people had beliefs that Chase Whitley could break camp with the Yankees in their bullpen. I'm no expert, but I don't think that his spring performance is helping him out at all.

Whitley entered the 7th inning with the Yankees up 2-1, but two hits, a hit-by-pitch and a walk later, he gave up two runs in the inning that let the Baltimore Orioles jump ahead, ending the Bombers' four-game spring winning streak with a 3-2 win over New York Tuesday night at GMS Field in Tampa.

Ryan Flaherty started the 7th inning for Baltimore be singling to right field, then Whitley hit Francisco Peguero with a pitch, putting runners on 1st and 2nd. Quintin Berry followed with a single into center field that scored Flaherty to tie the game at 2-2. After issuing a walk to Cord Phelps, Whitley finally record his first out of the inning by striking out Jonathan Schoop.

The Julio Borbon hit a hard grounder into the hole near first base, but Scott Sizemore made a nice diving catch to throw out Borbon, letting the go-ahead run come in to score.

Sizemore is working back from his second ACL tear, and if he plays enough, he might actually break camp with the major league squad.

“He looked OK,” Girardi said. “He’s been through a lot, and obviously each day that he goes out there I think he’s going to feel more comfortable and probably feel that he can overcome the stuff that he’s went through the last couple of years. But it was good to see him out there.”

The Yankees were the first team to get on the board when Francisco Cervelli hit his first homerun of the spring off of Wei-Yen Chen in the 2nd inning. Yankees catchers have been hitting very well this spring, and Cervelli continued the pace.

Cervelli said that he got lucky with the homerun, but also that he really is swinging the bat well early in camp.

“I've been working very hard with [Kevin Long] and can see the results,” Cervelli said. “But this is just trying to get ready for the season.”

After back-to-back singles following the Cervelli homerun, spring training standout Yangervis Solarte singled into left field to score Brendan Ryan -- who was hit on the hand by a line drive during BP -- giving the Yankees a 2-0 lead.

“He’s played really well, he really has,” Girardi said of Solarte. “We've moved him around. He’s played all over the infield, and we put him in left field. He’s a switch hitter. He has [raised some eyebrows].”

David Phelps was on the bump for the Yankees to start the game, making his second start of the spring, and this was not his best showing.

With the O's playing almost none of their expected Opening Day starters, Phelps was being hit hard, but only gave up one run on five hits, while walking one and striking out two in 2.2 innings.

"They got some hits, but I feel like I was able to bear down those first two innings and pitch out of some spots, which is huge," Phelps said. "If there's ever a time to work on something like that, Spring Training is a great time."

He ran into some trouble in the 3rd inning, which caused him to exit one-out shy of finishing his three inning workout. Phelps gave up a triple to David Lough to leadoff the inning, then Jemile Weeks brought him home on a groundout to Ryan at shortstop, for his only run given up.

Derek Jeter played the first four innings of the game as the DH before being replaced by Brian McCann, who hit a ball pretty hard in the 7th inning that looked like it might go out. Jeter went 0-for-2, and is still looking for his first hit of the spring.

The Yankees had seven hits in the game, but nobody collected more than one. Sizemore hit a long single into left field in the 8th inning. Both Adonis Garcia and Brian Roberts, who also walked, went 1-for-1.

Cesar Cabral, who has looked good so far, threw a scoreless 8th inning, and Preston Claiborne did the same thing in the same thing in the 9th, giving up just a single to open the inning, but nothing more.

The Yankees will hit the road tomorrow and head to Charlotte, Florida for an AL East matchup against the Tampa Bay Rays. Adam Warren gets the call for the Yankees, making his second start of the spring. First pitch is scheduled for 1:05pm EST.


Gavin Ewbank is the Lead Writer of Yanks Beat Blog


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