Yankees Bats Struggle in 4-0 Loss to Rays

March 7, 2012; Tampa, FL, USA; New York Yankees starting pitcher Hiroki Kuroda (18) throws a pitch in the first inning during spring training against the Tampa Bay Rays at George M. Steinbrenner Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE

Hiroki Kuroda tossed two innings of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde baseball in his Yankees debut as the Bombers fell to James Shields and the Rays on Wednesday afternoon at George M. Steinbrenner Field, 4-0.

Kuroda got off to an impressive start in his first outing as a Yankee, breezing through the first inning while using just nine pitches. However, he allowed three straight hits to begin the second inning, capped by a two-run triple off the bat of Stephen Vogt. Following the triple, Kuroda retired the next three batters in order.

On the day, his line was a mixture of good and bad: two innings, three hits, three runs, two strikeouts, and no walks. Most importantly, Kuroda got his feel for real game situations back.

The group of Rafael Soriano, Cory Wade, Boone Logan, Adam Warren, Clay Rapada, and Kevin Whelan followed, with only Warren and Soriano allowing more than one baserunner. Warren also allowed the only other run of the game to score.

For the offense, the only projected big leaguers to record hits were Nick Swisher, who doubled, and Russell Martin, who singled. Dewayne Wise and Jose Gil also pitched in with singles, while Brandon Laird drew the only walk of the day for the Yanks.

Box Score.

Tomorrow, Ivan Nova will make his second start of the Spring while facing off against the Blue Jays, who will send Brett Cecil to the mound.

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