Yankees bat around in second, ride hot pitching to 4-0 win over Red Sox
Pitching was the name of the game on Wednesday for the Yankees, who rode hot hurlers and one big offensive inning to a 4-0 victory over the Red Sox at Steinbrenner Field in Tampa.
Lefty Vidal Nuno, starting in the Major League game so the Yankees could avoid giving Boston a look at CC Sabathia, continued his hot spring and had himself a CC-esque performance, allowing just two hits and one walk to the Red Sox starters in his five innings.
On the offensive side, the Yankees got all four of their runs in the fourth inning, batting around while touching up Red Sox starter Felix Doubront for five hits and a base on balls. Juan Rivera singled and Ben Francisco doubled to start the inning, and Jayson Nix hit a sacrifice fly to score Rivera to make it 1-0.
Chris Stewart followed with a single to plate Francisco, and after singles by Thomas Neal and Melky Mesa loaded the bases, Doubront uncorked a wild pitch to score Stewart and make it 3-0. Brett Gardner then walked to re-load the bases, and Eduardo Nunez hit a sac fly to push the lead to 4-0.
That was all the Yankees needed, as the bullpen pitched just as well as Nuno. David Robertson the lefty with an eight-pitch sixth, allowing with a single to Daniel Nava before getting a double play off the bat of Jackie Bradley, and the trio of Joba Chamberlain, Josh Spence - who was hit by a comebacker and left the game after retiring the only batter he faced - and Cody Eppley sent the Sox six up and six down in the seventh and eighth.
Mark Montgomery then came on for the ninth, allowing only a two-out single to Jackie Bradley Jr. before striking out Mauro Gomez to end the game.
With the win, the Yankees improve to 10-15 in Grapefruit League play, and will have a bit more than 24 hours off before they host the Minnesota Twins under the lights on Thursday night, a game that you can see live at 7 p.m. on YES.
Follow Lou DiPietro on Twitter: @LouDiPietroYES