While Gary Sanchez had certainly been impressive defensively thus far in spring training, the Yankee phenom had yet to break through in the hit column, until today.
The Yankees were in split squad action this afternoon, as they took on the Tigers at George M. Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, and the Red Sox at “Fenway South” in Fort Myers, Fla.
The lineup facing the Tigers featured more of the projected Opening Day starters, as well as Opening Day starting pitcher Masahiro Tanaka getting his first Spring Training action of 2017.
Hitless in his first two spring games, Sanchez ended that today in a big way, belting a 2-run shot to left off Tiger’s right-hander, Drew VerHagen. For those curious, the 26-year-old VerHagen has seen time in the Majors, holding a career 3-1 record with a 4.29 ERA over 50.1 innings pitched.
After impressive displays almost every day in spring workouts – including a blast off the scoreboard in left-center, Sanchez delivered a blast in game action, getting the scoring started en route to a 9-5 Yankees victory in Tampa.
After the game, Sanchez spoke with Yankees beat reporter for Yankees.com, Bryan Hoch. “To hit the first one of the spring, I feel good about that,” Sanchez said through an interpreter. “I’ve got to say, I hit it under a little bit and the wind grabbed a hold of it and helped me out. That’s baseball. Sometimes it’s the other way around, where you hit it really hard and the wind is blowing in and it doesn’t go anywhere. So I’ll take it.”
Sanchez finished the afternoon 2 for 3 with 2 RBI and a run scored.
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