Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Recap: Phillies 3, Yankees 1

Nathan Eovaldi, Andrew Miller and Alex Rodriguez each made their spring debuts as the Yankees fell to the Phillies, 3-1, in their preseason home opener Wednesday at George M. Steinbrenner Field.

A-Rod's Return: Rodriguez swung and missed at the first two pitches he saw from Phillies' right-hander Kevin Slowey in the bottom of the first, but stayed back on the next offering to line it into left field. Rodriguez also earned a walk and a fielder's choice on the day -- playing a good six innings.

Miller Works Out of a Jam: Miller surrendered a lead-off single to Odubel Herrera in the Phillies' half of the third, and after Herrera stole two bases, it appeared the lefty was bound to give up a run. Following a pair of strikeouts of Freddy Galvis and Dominic Brown, however, Miller began to look like his old self -- inducing a routine groundout from Ryan Howard to end the threat.

Eovaldi's Shaky First Start: Eovaldi is said to have reached 98 MPH on the radar gun in this one, but for the most part, the youngster still struggled with his location. In two innings of work, Eovaldi allowed two hits and an earned run -- recording no walks and a strikeout. 

The Next Yankees Shortstop: Didi Gregorius' first time in pinstripes somewhat surprisingly came in the lead-off spot, and though he never got a chance to show off his defensive skills all afternoon, he did go 0-for-1 with a walk. Not a very large sample size, but an intriguing one nonetheless.

Other Starters: The Yankees didn't get their second hit on Wednesday until the bottom of the sixth, and a lineup consisting of most of their big names was largely responsible for it. Indeed, Brian McCann, Mark Teixeira, Chase Headley and Stephen Drew each went 0-for-2 in the contest -- with Headley being the only one to ever go down on strikes.

Scoring: The Phillies took an early lead on a Cord Phelps single in the second, and added to that advantage with another knock from Maikel Franco in the fifth. The Yankees made up some ground thanks to a Gary Sanchez sac fly an inning later, but quickly lost it in the seventh when a blooper off the bat of Aaron Altherr brought another man home for Philadelphia. 

Next up: The Yankees will head to Bradenton for a matchup with the Pirates Thursday at 1:05 pm ET -- a game in which another one of their rotation candidates is set to throw. This time it will be middle reliever Esmil Rogers, who will go against Pittsburgh's Francisco Liriano in the Yanks' third exhibition in as many days.  

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)