Yankees stay perfect in Spring Training, Andujar walks it off
Miguel Andujar laced a double to tie the game in the seventh inning and belted a walk-off home run to win the game as the Yankees defeated the Phillies, 4-3.
Miguel Andujar entered the game as a pinch hitter in the seventh after Brandon Drury hit a two-out triple to set up Andujar’s double that would tie the game at two. After the Phillies tied the game in the ninth, Andujar came up again in the clutch, delivering a two-out, two strike walk-off home run to give the Yankees the victory.
Collectively, Andy is 4-for-7 this spring, which is nothing at all in terms of sample size; but has shown positive signs up to this point. Then there is Drury, who is 2-for-3 and is showing some positive things as well.
Again, it is way too early to predict anything, but it is nice to see that both third base options are having a good start.
Gary Sanchez made his Spring Training debut, finishing with a double and pop out. Defensively, he did have a passed ball but made up for it by picking off Caesar Hernandez in the third inning.
Other notable offensive contributors include Tyler Wade and Jorge Saez. Wade drove in the first run of the game in the bottom of the fifth with a single. Saez replaced Giancarlo Stanton in the eighth inning and delivered a clutch single that regained a 3-2 lead.
Both of these players have gotten off to hot starts as well, and are fighting for positions on the Opening Day roster.
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Pitching-wise, Sonny Gray had a solid two-inning debut, allowing two hits while striking out two. Of his 29 pitches, 20 of them were strikes, which is an excellent sign that Gray may have worked out some lingering control issues.
Chance Adams followed in the third inning and did not have the best outing. He walked the first batter, who eventually scored off of a Carlos Santana sacrifice fly. With two outs in the inning, Adams gave up a single, then walked another batter. Sanchez bailed him out with the pickoff at second to end Adams’ outing. Granted, this was only one inning, but not the start Adams was hoping for this spring.
Ben Heller also ran into some trouble in the fifth and escaped allowing only one run. Heller started by striking out Rhys Hoskins, then gave up a walk-single-walk to the next three batters to load the bases.
He struck out Nick Williams for a crucial second out, then hit the next batter to give up an additional run. Heller finally struck out the next batter to end his outing.
Overall, this game told me that some youngsters are making early noise to start of Spring Training and others that are still trying to find their groove.
I would not be so worried about Adams and Heller mostly because there have only been four games. Additionally, they have more time to develop because of what is already at the major league level.
Next: Checking in on the position battles
Andujar and Gleyber Torres, however, have legitimate chances to be everyday starters this year, so I am more worried about how they perform. The Yankees will hit the road tomorrow to take on the Blue Jays. Chad Green makes his Spring Training debut as a starter.