New York Yankees Recap: Masahiro Tanaka Struggles In Opening Day Loss To Toronto Blue Jays


New York Yankees Recap: Yankees Lose Opening Day To Toronto Blue Jays As Masahiro Tanaka Struggles

Opening Day did not go as planned for the New York Yankees, as they were defeated handedly by the Toronto Blue Jays. The Blue Jays have had their struggles visiting the Yankees, but this afternoon they were able to make the most of their opportunities and pick up a victory to start their season on the right foot. The same cannot be said for the Yankees, as some of the questions marks from Spring Training have carried over.

One of those question marks was Masahiro Tanaka, and he did nothing Opening Day to quell those problems. Tanaka made it through only four innings, giving up five runs, four of which were earned. He gave up five hits and two walks in the process. One positive was that Tanaka struck out six batters, but he needed 82 pitches to only make it through his four innings of work.

All five of the runs that Tanaka surrendered came in a disastrous third inning. The first two runners got on base, as Kevin Pillar singled and then Devon Travis followed it up with a walk. Things got hairy for the Yankees after that, as Jose Reyes attempted a sacrifice that Chase Headley through up the right field line that resulted in Pillar scoring. Tanaka made a stab for the ball that seemed to shield Headley, making for a more difficult play.

Newly acquired catcher Russell Martin then singled to right, scoring both Travis and Reyes. Tanaka was able to get Jose Bautista, but then gave up the biggest blow of the inning as Edwin Encarnacion launched his first homer of the season to left field. Tanaka was able to escape the inning without any more damage done, getting Josh Donaldson and Dioner Navarro out consecutively to end the inning, but the damage was done.

The five runs the Blue Jays scored in the third inning were more than enough, Drew Hutchison had a strong start to his season. The only blemish on his performance came off the bat of Brett Gardner, who placed a ball in the right field seats for the lone run of the game for the Yankees. Hutchinson gave up only three hits and two walks to go with three strikeouts to get his first win of the season.

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The Blue Jays would get that run back off the bat of the rookie Travis, who launched his first career home run of his career off Chasen Shreve.

Another positive for the Yankees in the game was the play of Alex Rodriguez. Rodriguez was cheered by the Yankees fans, and had a strong showing in his first appearance of the season. Rodrigue drew a walk in his first at-bat, then hit a single in his second at-bat for his first hit of the season. Any production the Yankees receive from Rodrigues this season will be considered an added bonus. So far so good, as Rodriguez has gotten his season off on the right foot.

The Yankees and Blue Jays will continue their series Wednesday night, when Michael Pineda will take the mound for the Yankees and be opposed by former Cy Young award winner R.A. Dickey.

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