Spring training can bring a mixed bag as far as game quality goes. Sometimes the lineups and pitching choices leave a lot to be desired. Other times, however, they make for great entertainment, combining top prospects with a representative batting order. The Yankees’ 7-1 victory over the Rays this afternoon falls into the exciting category.
In lieu of full-length recaps, we will run bullet-point highlights through spring training. Important contributions and players will get covered, plus a roundup of the team’s pitching lines, as well as news and notes from the club. Hope you all enjoy this format!
- We need to spend some time talking about Clarke Schmidt. The right-hander dazzled in his two innings of work, allowing just two hits while striking out three. His fastball touched 95 mph, and he delivered a steady diet of hammer curveballs. That’s a big-league ready pitch; Lucas Apostoleris has the video evidence. I’m seriously excited for Schmidt, y’all.
- J.A. Happ appears the farthest along in terms of starting pitcher buildup. He logged three innings of one-run ball, striking out two. Mike King and Jonathan Loaisiga also got into the game, with Loaisiga impressing in particularly. He struck out four Rays to close out the game. As Evan noted earlier, keep him in the bullpen, Yankees. You have a relief weapon on your hands.
- Tyler Wade and Clint Frazier launched back-to-back home runs in the first inning. They both hit absolute bombs, too. Check this out. These two have clearer paths to the majors in light of the 26-man roster and injuries to Aaron Hicks and Giancarlo Stanton. They’re worth watching as the spring continues.
- Mike Ford had quite the productive afternoon, pinch-hitting for Zack Granite after two at-bats. Ford collected two hits, including a two-run homer in the eighth inning. The projection systems loved him all winter, and he’s showing why.
The Yankees travel to take on the Braves tomorrow afternoon. That game will only have a radio broadcast, sadly. You can listen along at 1:05 PM.