The Yankees continued their pursuit of a Grapefruit League title Friday night in the second half of a split-squad double header against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Chris Capuano made his first start of the spring, and we got a look at what could potentially be the first four in the batting order come Opening Day in Jacoby Ellsbury, Brett Gardner, Carlos Beltran and Brian McCann. It was Beltran's first in-game action of the spring. Alex Rodriguez was the DH and hit fifth.
The game was not televised, so it's hard to say just how Capuano looked, but his line for the night suggests it could have gone a little better. In two innings he allowed three hits, including a long two-run home run in the second inning by Tony Sanchez, though he did strike out four. In the early returns on the competition for the fifth starter job, this afternoon's starter Bryan Mitchell appeared to take round one.
David Carpenter and Chris Martin each threw a scoreless inning in the third and fourth, respectively. Both allowed a hit and struck out one. Righty thrower Jose Ramirez came in for the fifth, and was promptly greeted by a first pitch launched over the wall by Pirates' center fielder Jaff Decker (that's not a typo, his name is Jaff), but Ramirez rebounded well, retiring the next three in order. After 1 2/3 scoreless innings from Diego Moreno, Jacob Lindgren made a successful appearance, striking out two and walking one in 1 1/3 innings pitched. Chasen Shreve pitched a scoreless, hitless ninth.
The Yankee bats were dormant for the majority of the game. Beltran kicked off his spring with an 0-for-2 with two strikeouts, one looking and one swinging. He worked a walk in his final at-bat in the sixth inning, and was pinch-ran for by Jake Cave. A-Rod also went 0-for-2 with a walk, a strikeout, and what the writers at the game described as "a soft, broken-bat lineout" on Twitter. Prior to the eighth inning, the Yanks only had two hits, one each from Gardner and Ellsbury.
In the bottom of the eighth, the bats came to life a bit and the Yanks got themselves on the board. Catcher Eddy Rodriguez doubled on a line drive to left, followed by a Francisco Arcia single and an RBI single from Cave. That would be the extent of the Yankees scoring, though.