New York at Toronto

New York
W: M. Tanaka (1-0) L: D. McGowan (0-1)
HR: NYY - None   TOR - M. Cabrera (1)

Tanaka wins debut as Yankees beat Blue Jays wire reports

TORONTO -- Masahiro Tanaka knew the English words to answer a question about the last time he'd been this anxious before a big game.

"Japan Series," Tanaka said, referring to last season's championship in which he saved the clinching seventh game.

Nerves were an issue for Tanaka in the early innings of his major league debut for the New York Yankees, but the right-hander soon settled into his new surroundings. Tanaka pitched seven innings, Jacoby Ellsbury had three hits and the Yankees beat the Toronto Blue Jays 7-3 on Friday night.

"He did a really good job of controlling his emotions and finding himself after the first couple of innings," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said of Tanaka. "He was able to fix his mistakes early on and that's the sign of a mature pitcher."

Staked to a 2-0 lead before taking the mound, Tanaka (1-0) got a startling welcome to the major leagues when he surrendered a home run to Toronto's Melky Cabrera on his third pitch. It was Cabrera's first homer of the season and the second leadoff shot of his career.

"It was my mistake and I thought that Cabrera took a really good swing at it," Tanaka said through a translator.

Tanaka settled down to retire the next three batters, catching Jose Bautista looking at a curveball and getting Edwin Encarnacion to miss on a slider.

"I was missing some spots earlier in the game but as the game progressed, I think I was getting better," Tanaka said.

New York reclaimed the lead and chased Blue Jays starter Dustin McGowan (0-1) with a two-run third that was aided by an overturned call. McGowan thought he'd escaped a jam when Ichiro Suzuki was called out on an infield chopper, but Girardi argued and the call was changed after replay review. Yangervis Solarte followed with a two-run double.

Tanaka looked comfortable the rest of the way, facing just one batter over the minimum in his final five innings. Encarnacion hit a one-out double in the third but was left stranded. He reached again on an infield single off Solarte's glove to begin the sixth but was erased on a double play.

Tanaka allowed three runs, two earned, and six hits, walked none and struck out eight. He threw 97 pitches, 65 strikes, and earned his 100th professional victory.

"He's definitely the real deal," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said.

Ellsbury, New York's other high-priced offseason addition, stole two bases and scored twice as the Yankees won their second straight following an 0-2 start. He doubled and scored in the first, singled in the second, doubled and scored in the fourth and walked in the sixth.

Ellsbury, who came in hitless in his first three games with the Yankees, also made a sliding catch to retire Dioner Navarro for the final out of the sixth.

"He did everything tonight," Girardi said. "He hit, stole bases, made a great catch in centerfield. That's why we went and got him, because that's what he capable of doing. He's a game-changer."

Solarte doubled twice and had three RBIs.

"That kid had a nice game today," Gibbons said. "I don't know where he came from but he's a pretty good little player."

Teixeira left in the second inning after he strained his right hamstring while trying to field a foul grounder. Kelly Johnson moved from second base to first and Brian Roberts came in to play second.

Girardi said Teixeira will be evaluated again Saturday, and that Johnson will continue to handle first base.

"It kind of leaves you scrambling a little bit," Girardi said.

Teixeira was limited to 15 games last season because of a right wrist injury suffered at the World Baseball Classic.

Starting for the first time since September, 2011, McGowan allowed four runs and eight hits in 2 2-3 innings. He walked one and struck out three.


Yankees SS Derek Jeter got his first day off of the season. ... The Blue Jays designated RH Jeremy Jeffress and recalled RH Chad Jenkins from Triple-A Buffalo. ... Former Blue Jays Cy Young award winner Roy Halladay threw out the first pitch. ... New York RH Michael Pineda faces Dickey (0-1, 10.80) on Saturday. For Pineda, it's his first major league start since Sept. 21, 2011, when he pitched for Seattle. Pineda had shoulder surgery in May, 2012.

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Masahiro Tanaka goes seven innings, striking out eight to pick up the victory in his MLB debut.  (USATSI)
Masahiro Tanaka goes seven innings, striking out eight to pick up the victory in his MLB debut. (USATSI)

Players of the Game
New York

J. Ellsbury
AB 4
R 2
H 3
HR 0

M. Cabrera
AB 4
R 1
H 1
HR 1

Related Video

New York (A.L.) Yankees
Jacoby Ellsbury, CF4230100 .273
Brett Gardner, LF4121022 .286
Carlos Beltran, DH4011103 .200
Brian McCann, C5011013 .308
Mark Teixeira, 1B1011000 .250
   Brian Roberts, 2B3100132 .231
Kelly Johnson, 3B-1B5020023 .273
Ichiro Suzuki, RF5230014 .556
Yangervis Solarte, 2B-3B5023004 .500
Dean Anna, SS4110112 .250
Masahiro Tanaka, P0000000 .000
   Matt Thornton, P0000000 .000
   Dellin Betances, P0000000 .000
   David Robertson, P0000000 .000
2B - Jacoby Ellsbury 2 (2, McGowan), Yangervis Solarte 2 (3, McGowan)
3B - Kelly Johnson (1, Cecil)
SH - Brett Gardner (1)
RBI - Brett Gardner (2), Carlos Beltran (2), Brian McCann (2), Mark Teixeira (2), Yangervis Solarte 3 (4)
2-OUT RBI - Yangervis Solarte 3 (4)
SB - Jacoby Ellsbury 2 (3, 2nd base off McGowan/Navarro), Brett Gardner (1, 2nd base off Delabar/Navarro), Brian Roberts (1, 2nd base off McGowan/Navarro)
PK - Ichiro Suzuki (1, Redmond)
Team LOB - 11
DP - Anna-Solarte-Johnson
E - Mark Teixeira (2, Throwing(Roberts replaces Teixeria on a 2-1 count.))
New York (A.L.) Yankees
Masahiro Tanaka (W,1-0) 7632081 2.57
Matt Thornton (H,1) 0.2000010 0.00
Dellin Betances (H,1) 0.1000200 0.00
David Robertson 1000000 0.00
Pitches-Strikes - Masahiro Tanaka 97-65, Matt Thornton 13-9, Dellin Betances 13-3, David Robertson 11-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Masahiro Tanaka 8-5, Matt Thornton 1-0, Dellin Betances 1-0, David Robertson 1-2
Batters Faced - Masahiro Tanaka 27, Matt Thornton 2, Dellin Betances 3, David Robertson 3
Toronto Blue Jays
Melky Cabrera, LF4111012 .318
Colby Rasmus, CF4000022 .056
Jose Bautista, RF3000120 .214
Edwin Encarnacion, 1B4020011 .150
Adam Lind, DH3000112 .300
Dioner Navarro, C4110002 .200
Brett Lawrie, 3B4110011 .111
Ryan Goins, 2B2000000 .000
   a-Maicer Izturis, PH-2B2000001 .500
Jonathan Diaz, SS3012010 .250
Dustin McGowan, P0000000 .000
   Aaron Loup, P0000000 .000
   Todd Redmond, P0000000 .000
   Brett Cecil, P0000000 .000
   Steve Delabar, P0000000 .000
   Jeremy Jeffress, P0000000 .000
a-flied out for Goins in the 7th
2B - Edwin Encarnacion (2, Tanaka)
HR - Melky Cabrera (1, Tanaka)
RBI - Melky Cabrera (1), Jonathan Diaz 2 (3)
Team LOB - 5
Outfield Assists - Melky Cabrera 1
E - Todd Redmond (1, Throwing)
Toronto Blue Jays
Dustin McGowan (L,0-1) 2.2844130 13.50
Aaron Loup 1.1211120 3.00
Todd Redmond 1.2100110 0.00
Brett Cecil 1.1100010 0.00
Steve Delabar 1111110 9.00
Jeremy Jeffress 1311020 10.80
IBB - Beltran by Aaron Loup
WP - Steve Delabar (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Dustin McGowan 72-45, Aaron Loup 23-12, Todd Redmond 22-12, Brett Cecil 13-11, Steve Delabar 20-12, Jeremy Jeffress 20-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Dustin McGowan 2-3, Aaron Loup 2-0, Todd Redmond 1-2, Brett Cecil 3-0, Steve Delabar 1-1
Batters Faced - Dustin McGowan 17, Aaron Loup 7, Todd Redmond 6, Brett Cecil 5, Steve Delabar 5, Jeremy Jeffress 5
Game Information
Attendance - 48197
Game Time - 3:26
Temperature - 68
Umpires - Home - Lance Barrett, First Base - Dana DeMuth, Second Base - Ron Kulpa, Third Base - Ed Hickox