By: Adam Israel | Staff Writer
David Phelps took the mound today against the Minnesota Twins at George M. Steinbrenner Field to continue his fight for the number five spot in the rotation. The Twins defeated the Yankees 7-3 on a battle of the bullpens.
Despite the final score, Phelps pitched well, striking out four batters, while allowing two runs, including a home run, over four innings. Phelps curveball was on today as he said in an interview with Jack Curry of YES Network. Two of Phelps four strikeouts came on nasty curveballs. Besides a few blunders in the early innings, Phelps had good command and never lost control of the game.
Phelps gave up a leadoff double to Aaron Hicks in the first inning who later went on to score on a RBI single three batters later. After escaping the first inning only giving up one run, Phelps got throught the second inning fairly easily. Brian Dozier led off the third inning with a home run to left field.
Manny Banuelos took over in the sixth inning and only lasted one out. Banuelos loaded the bases with no outs. After retiring Hicks, Bauelos gave up a two run double and was immediatey pulled from the game. Fred Lewis came on and allowed two more runs to score. After the four run sixth, the Twins did not score again in the game.
Jacoby Ellsbury and Brian Roberts led off the bottom of the first inning with back to back doubles off of Twins starting pitcher Kyle Gibson. Mark Teixeira drove in Roberts on a hard single to left field. The Yankees scored their third and final run on an Eduardo Nunez RBI groundout in the first inning that scored Teixeira.
After Gibson left the game after four innings, the Twins bullpen held the Yankees hitters hitless. The Yankees lack of production from their bench proved to contribute to the Yankees loss to the Twins.
Although it was a slow day for the Yankees, there were a few bright spots for the squad.
Teixeira hit the ball hard and reached base two of three times. In addition, he fielded and moved around well, which is a good sign for him.
Also, Dellin Betances continued his stellar spring, taking over for Lewis with the bases loaded and only one out. Betances did not allow a hit and struck out two batters setting down all five Twins he faced.