Tanaka Day has come and gone. The Yankees were victorious in Masahiro Tanaka's first big league start last night against the Toronto Blue Jays, winning the series opener 7-3, behind seven solid innings from Tanaka, and a impressive offensive output from the Bombers' lineup.
The Yankees were able to take a quick 2-0 lead against Dustin McGowan in the 1st inning, but Tanaka gave those runs right back in the first two frames. The first big league batter he face, Melky Cabrera, hit a homerun to open the bottom half of the first, then Toronto scored two more runs in the 2nd to take a 3-2 lead.
After giving up the lead, Tanaka settled down, and was able to make it through seven inning, striking out eight and not issuing a walk.
The Yankees are back to .500 for the first time this season, and they can already capture their first series win of the season today as the square off with the Blue Jays once again at the Rogers Centre this afternoon.
Today's lineup vs Toronto:
- Jacoby Ellsbury CF
- Derek Jeter SS
- Carlos Beltran RF
- Brian McCann DH
- Alfonso Soriano LF
- Kelly Johnson 1B
- Francisco Cervelli C
- Yangervis Solarte 3B
- Dean Anna 2B
Pitching matchup preview: Michael Pineda vs R.A. Dickey
Michael Pineda hasn't pitched off of a mound in a big league game in over two years. Since being traded to the Yankees from the Seattle Mariners in 2012, the right-hander has missed the past two seasons while recovering fro shoulder surgery.
Two years after hurting his shoulder during spring training in 2012, the Yankees are finally going to get a chance to watch their prized acquisition of the time pitch in a regular season game when he takes the mound against Toronto today.
Pineda looked really good this spring for the Yankees. He was throwing strikes, limiting runs, and keeping opposing teams off the board, for the most part. His velocity isn't quite where it was before the surgery; it was sitting more in the 91-94 range. His looked really sharp, and could be a very good pitch for him this season.
Going up against the Yankees is a pitcher that they saw a few times last season, in R.A Dickey. Dickey is in his second season with the Blue Jays after being acquired from the Mets last offseason. He hasn't quite been the Cy Young winning that the Jays traded for, but he hasn't been terrible for them either.
Dickey is trying to makeup for his first outing of the season, one that wasn't very good. He tied a career-high with six walks while giving up six runs in five innings in the Jays' loss.
That game was in Tampa, and Dickey faced the Yankees four times last season, going 2-2 against the Bombers, with both wins coming at home.