Spring Game 3: NYY vs. DET — All about the pitching

The hardest part about this hybrid blog is that sometimes I have to just write the words without being able to show you when something amazing happens during a partially filmed Spring Training. So when the Yankees travel to Lakeland to play the Tigers and throw a really great game, I am left with just my own descriptions without being able to show off the stellar prospects like last year’s first round draft pick James Kaprielian and that of sometimes reliever/sometimes starter Bryan Mitchell.

Look, it was rather great pitching all around, something neither of the first two games seemed to have anywhere (including the Tigers on Wednesday). Bryan Mitchell started the game for the Yankees going toe-to-toe with the Tigers’ ace and doing a much better job than him in the overall. In the 3rd inning, the Yankees called on invitee Vinny Pestano to replace Mitchell. With 2 outs and 2 runners on base (with a hit-by-pitch and a walk), Pestano left the ball in the strike zone on the absolutely wrong person in a Tigers uniform (a 2-time Triple Crown winner) who promptly hit a 3-run home run over the right field fence into the visitor’s bullpen.

But other than that, the Yankees bullpen limited the Tigers to that home run hit and a double in the 7th inning that fizzled out due to a strong Yankee defense. The Yankees technically out-hit the Tigers with their 6 hits, but they couldn’t seem to string them together enough to collectively make any runs.

The one to watch today is, of course, the reliever everyone was talking about — James Kaprielian. It was really the first time most people have had a chance to see the young prospect in action. And he did a pretty good job at his first impression as a Yankee — 2 innings, 6 batters, no hits, no runs, no walks, and 2 strikeouts. Apparently, according to scouts and others “in the know”, his fast ball sat in the mid-90s, topping out around 96mph. And that was just a brief outing for the young pitcher. Potential doesn’t begin to describe this guy, and I’m looking forward to seeing more of him in action.

Final score: 3-0 Tigers.

Just two hours and 37 minutes of play between the stellar pitching and pretty decent defense for an away game. I know they’ve been working on ways to cut down on the delays (especially the intentional ones), including timing the coaching visits to the mound, shortening the transition between pitchers and innings, and adjusting how a player calls “time” legally. But a shorter game like this is really only seen when the pitching (on both sides) is like it was today.

Okay, guys, more of that, but with runs on the Yankees’ side of things, please.

Go Yankees!

{Media note: Like I said above, this wasn’t broadcast, so the highlights are next to nothing. The three I did find for the game were highlighting Tigers greatness, so I passed them by and let you imagine on your own instead.}

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