The New York Yankees defeated the Philadelphia Phillies in their grapefruit league opener on Saturday afternoon. The game was in Clearwater, Florida home of the Philadelphia Phillies. Ivan Nova made the start for the New York Yankees. He looked pretty good, he did give up a two run homerun to Hunter Pence but one of the runs was unearned. Nova this year isn’t worried about earning a spot on the team. He came to camp last year trying to earn a spot. He did eventually get a spot in the Yankees rotation but then was sent back to the minors in July. It may have been the best thing that happened to him. He came back and was better then ever and may never go back to the minors again. Nova is a guy the Yankees hope can be a staple of their rotation for years to come.
Nova pitched two innings giving up two runs and had two strikeouts. David Phelps who is ticketed for AAA Scranton Wilkes/Barre pitched two scoreless innings giving up a hit and striking out one. Manny Banuelos who is the top Yankees pitching prospect picked up the win pitching two innings and giving up a hit. He walked two guys. Dellin Betances one of the other top pitching prospects pitched a scoreless inning but walked two guys.
The offensive star in this game was Curtis Granderson. The Yankees and he both hope that he can have another MVP type season. Granderson was great last year after struggling hitting against lefties the year before. He had a double and a homerun in the game. Raul Ibanez playing in his first Yankees game and against his old team had an RBI double in the game. Those were the only regulars with hits.
Bill Hall is a veteran and had a hit in the game. He is a long-shot to make the team though. He could make it if there are injuries but he came to camp on a minor league deal and isn’t likely to be on the team come April.
The Yankees will play their exhibition home opener in Tampa Sunday afternoon against the same Phillies. The two teams actually meet three straight days to open the exhibition schedule. Freddy Garcia will start for the Yankees against Roy Halladay on Sunday afternoon and the starting infield will see their first action of the spring.