Tuesday, March 4, 2014

David Phelps will continue his fight to be the Yankees fifth starter tonight in Tampa when he faces the Baltimore Orioles in his second start of the spring at George M. Steinbrenner Field.

Jacoby Ellsbury, Derek Jeter and Carlos Beltran will be the most notable stars in the Bombers' lineup against the O's.

The Yankees enter tonight's game on a four-game winning streak after taking care of the Washington Nationals yesterday in Tampa. Ivan Nova started the game for the Yankees and looked very sharp, striking out four in three hitless innings, throwing 31 of 36 pitchers for strikes.

The Yankees used a four-run second inning against Ross Detwiler to take down the Nats, 4-2, in a game that also featured a scoreless inning from closer David Robertson.

Phelps' first start of the spring camp last week against the Pittsburgh Pirates. He pitched well, not great, but good enough.

He worked his way through two innings, giving up just the one run on the homerun and a single in the 2nd inning. He struck out four batter, all looking, and didn't issue a single walk. The homerun didn't get him off to a good start, but he settled in pretty well, had his fastball going for him, and certainly did not hurt himself in the race for the fifth starter job.

"I was trying to get the first guy to swing, and he wouldn't take the bat off his shoulder," Phelps said after the game. "I'll take it. The biggest thing I want to do this year is throw strikes, and if they're going to let me get them, I'm going to keep putting them in there."

Wei-Yin Chen will be on the mound for the Orioles tonight. He's making his first start of the spring, and is trying to improve on his 7-7 record and 4.07 ERA in 2013.

Tonight's lineup vs Baltimore:

Jeter is playing in back-to-back games for the first time this spring, and it's his first time as the DH. After Jeter gets a couple of at-bats in, Brian McCann will take over as the DH. Early spring standout Yangervis Solarte will be getting to start in left field tonight. Matt Thornton is scheduled to make his spring debut tonight. And on an interesting note: switch-pitcher Pat Venditte was added to the list of relievers for the game, so definitely watch for his possible appearance.

The game will be on YES and MLB.TV, but you can also follow on Twitter for updates.


Gavin Ewbank is the Lead Writer of Yanks Beat Blog


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