It was a cloudy day today in Tampa, and at 78 degrees, it was a pleasant day at George M. Steinbrenner Field, where the World Champion Washington Nationals visited the New York Yankees on their home field. The Yankees put up Mashiro Tanaka in his spring season debut to face the Nationals Joe Ross. The game started out slowly as the first inning remained scoreless. Tanaka came out at the top of the second but allowed a man on base and then a long homer to Raudy Read for the early Nationals 2-0 lead. The Yankees remained scoreless in the bottom of the second. Zack Britton made his debut and shot down the Nats in the top of the third while striking out two Nats.
The Yankees broke it open in the bottom of the third inning scoring six runs. With two on, Hernandez had a wild pitch driving in two Yankee runners. DJ then bounced on over the left-field fence for a ground-rule double driving in Erik Kratz for the 3-2 Yankee lead. Harper came in for Hernandez, giving up another three runs to the Yankees. Harper allowed two runners and then hit Brett Gardner to load the bases with Yankees. Sanchez flew out but drove in DJ and Castro overthrew third base allowing Torres to score, and then Harper had a wild pitch that allowed Gardner to score to complete the six-run inning.
Chad Green took over for Britton in the top of the fourth. He struck out one and allowed a walk and a strikeout, then got a ground out for a clean inning in his spring training debut.
Tanner Rainey came out for the Nats in the bottom of the 4th as the skies became rainy looking. Mike Ford walked, Clint Frazier then hit one off the left-field wall to move Ford to third base. Erik Kratz got to the plate (he scored in the third), and walked to load the bases with no outs. Next up was DJ LeMahieu, who struck out. Torres followed with a sac fly that scored Ford from third for the Yankees 7-2 lead. Estevan Florial lined one past first, driving in Frazier from third for the 8-2 Yankee lead. Sanchez flew out to center, but the Yankees picked up two more runs.
The Yankees used Tommy Kahnle in the top of the fifth, he got two quick outs but then walked one and allowed a long single to left putting two men on base. Although he struggled, he got out of it with another strikeout. At the bottom of the fifth, the rain started to come down as Gio Urshela singled off new Nats pitcher Guerra, Miguel Andujar in this third plate appearance sent a rocket down to the left-field wall moving Urshela to third on the double. No Yankee has had more hits in his first 162 games then Miguel Andujar since Joe DiMaggio. Mike Ford flew out, and Clint Frazier walked to get on base for his third time in the game. Erik Kratz came to the plate as the Umpires pulled the players off the field as the skies opened up. Being an official game, the Umpires called the game with two Yankees still on base. The Yankees won 8-2 over the Nationals in the rain shorted game. Zack Britton got the win for the Yankees.
During the game, Ryan Ruocco and David Cone interviewed Yankee General Manager Brian Cashman on several subjects. Cashman commented on the Luiz Severino situation and how they finally decided Tommy John surgery was necessary. It was a contrast dye MRI that revealed the partially torn UCL. He will undergo surgery on Thursday. The procedure will be performed by Dr. David Altchek at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York.
They also discussed Aaron Judge and Miguel Andujar. He stated that they are going slow with Judge to be sure he is at full strength to start the season. Saying that there is no rush, we want him for the full season. As far as Andujar is concerned, both he and Manager Aaron Boone are satisfied with Miguel’s interest in trying different positions and his accomplishments so far. Yankee great Bernie Williama also joined the YES booth for an inning during the game. Williams is in town for a concert.