Less than a week before the start of the regular season is not a time when you want the headlines to be about offensive struggles and an injury. But unfortunately, those were the two main happenings in today's game. The offense put up just four hits while Brendan Ryan had to be helped off the field in the sixth inning. It's just spring training, but I can't imagine today's 3-0 loss to the Rays was what the Yankees were hoping for.
The Rays scored the game's first run in the top of the second. Desmond Jennings led off the inning against Chase Whitley with a double. James Loney then squeezed a single through the right side of the infield, scoring Jennings to make it 1-0.
After that, nothing much happened for a couple innings. Both teams failed with runners in scoring position a couple times. Whitley was pretty decent for the Yankees. He went four innings allowing one run on four hits while striking out six. Esmil Rogers came in for him to start the fifth. Rogers went 1.1 innings, allowing two hits and a walk while striking out three.
More on Ryan's injury
More on Ryan's injury
Chasen Shreve replaced Rogers with one on and one out in the top of the sixth. Shreve would be the recipient of some bad luck. Loney hit a fly ball near the foul line in shallow left field. The ball bounced just fair and then bounced out of play for a ground rule double. That put runners and second and third with still one out. After Rene Rivera struck out, Kevin Kiermaier grounded one to Ryan at short. Ryan couldn't field the ball and made an error on the play, allowing both runners to score, making it 3-0. And to make matters worse, Ryan hurt himself on the play and had to be helped off the field.
Andrew Bailey pitched the seventh inning for the Yankees and got himself into some trouble. With one out in the inning, Bailey walked John Jaso. After getting the next out, he allowed a single to Tim Beckham, with Jaso moving to third. A stole base by Beckham then put two runners in scoring position. However, Bailey would get Joey Butler to strike out to escape the jam.
After struggling for most of the day, the Yankees finally got something going in the bottom of the ninth. Ramon Flores led off the inning with a single. After Jake Cave struck out, John Ryan Murphy drew a walk putting runners on first and second. Cole Figueroa then grounded one to first. The Rays took the out at first, with the runners moving to second and third with two outs. That left it up to Austin Romine, who flew out to shallow left field to end the game and give the Rays the 3-0 win.
Tomorrow is a split squad day for the Yankees. In one of the games, the Yankees will host the Pirates. In the other, the Yankees will play the Tigers. Both games will be at 1 pm Eastern, and both will be on TV. The Pirates game will be on YES, while the Tigers will be on ESPN.