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Tanaka expected to pitch Thursday

After a flawless debut, the right-hander will make his second appearance this spring
03/02/2014 11:08 AM ET
By The Associated Press

Masahiro Tanaka threw two scoreless frames in his debut on Saturday.(AP)

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- Masahiro Tanaka will make his second spring training start for the New York Yankees on Thursday.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi announced Sunday the Japanese star will pitch in the road game against the Philadelphia Phillies in Clearwater.

Tanaka threw two shutout innings in his debut Saturday, allowing two hits and striking out three in the Yankees' 4-0 victory over Philadelphia. He is set to go three innings Thursday.

''I thought he handled the situation really well because I think there's been a lot of anticipation,'' Girardi said.

Tanaka signed a $155 million, seven-year contract in January. He was 24-0 with a 1.27 ERA last year while leading the Rakuten Golden Eagles to a Japan Series title.

The right-hander is expected to start the Yankees' third or fourth regular season game.

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