The Tampa Yankees traveled to Lakeland to start their season against the Flying Tigers where Vicente Campos would make his first start of 2016.
Tampa’s infield which fills out the top five spots in the lineup highlight the roster, however, the whole lineup showed promise yesterday. Jorge Mateo, Abiatal Avelino, Mike Ford, and Billy Fleming would all reach base in the first inning. Miguel Andujar started his season with the same power he had in 2015 sending a two-run shot to left field. The score would be 2-0 after the top of the first inning. Catcher Santiago Nessy also gave the Yankees a run in the second inning with a homer of his own. Vicente Campos would be dominant in his five innings of work besides one solo home run given up in the first.
In the fourth the Tampa Yanks’ tacked on another four runs after Nessy starting the inning off with another XBH. Zack Zehner would single moving Nessy to third and a wild pitch to Jorge Mateo would bring Nessy home to make it 4-2. Miguel Andujar would hit a sac-fly scoring Zack Zehner. Mike Ford would have his own productive out as well hitting a sac-fly scoring Mateo having the score at 6-2. Finally Billy Fleming would make it 7-2 with a single past the shortstop.
The Yankees last two runs would come from Jorge Mateo hitting to deep center for a stand-up triple. Mateo’s speed is no secret, but you don’t realize just how fast he is until you see him in person. Zack Zehner scored from first and Mateo was close to passing him at third base. Mateo would go 3-5 on the day with two RBIs, two runs, a walk, and a stolen base.
While the Yankees’ hitting was unstoppable their pitching was even more of an obstacle for the Flying Tigers. Vicente Campos went five inning and gave up two hits. While one run came from a home run the other was from a balk which is something easy to manage. He struck out nine and walked three on his Opening Day win.
The bullpen wouldn’t let another hit go as Dillon McNamera, Jacon Lindgren, and Jonathan Holder held the Flying Tigers hitless after five. Lindgren recorded a strikeout in his one inning and Holder struck out five in his two innings of work. It was a complete team win and a great way to start the season.
The Yankees take on the Flying Tigers at George M. Steinbrenner Field for their home opener tonight at 7 pm. Pitching for the Tampa Yankees is Ian Clarkin who looks to start his first full season with Tampa on a good note.