TAMPA, Fla. — Brett Gardner went 0 for 2 in his first spring training game of the year, Starlin Castro hit a two-run homer and made a nifty defensive play and the New York Yankees beat the Toronto Blue Jays 2-1 Wednesday night.
Gardner played five innings in left field. He hit a grounder and struck out in his first game since bruising his left wrist in last year’s AL wild-card loss to Houston.
"The results weren’t great, but I felt good," Gardner said.
Castro hit an opposite-field drive to right off Drew Hutchison and made a running grab in shallow right on Kevin Pillar’s pop fly. Acquired from the Chicago Cubs in December, Castro moved from shortstop to second base last season and played 38 games at the position.
"I think he’s doing pretty good," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "We’ve been pleased with him so far at second base. I think he’s done a really good job, worked extremely hard. The transition for him I don’t think is going to be a problem."
Hutchison, bidding for the fifth starter spot, allowed two runs and four hits in 4 2-3 innings.
"I think I’ve been throwing the ball well," Hutchison said. "I’ve been accomplishing the things I wanted to accomplish."
Nathan Eovaldi struck out two and walked two over two hitless innings in his second spring training appearance for the Yankees since his season was cut short after a Sept. 5 start due to right elbow inflammation.
"My arm felt great," Eovaldi said. "I thought my pitches were good. Worked a lot on the counts."
Hutchison and Eovaldi also faced each other last Thursday. The Toronto right-hander allowed a run and three hits in 2 2-3 innings. "He’s looked very good this spring," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. Eovaldi retired all six batters he faced Thursday.
Blue Jays: Marco Estrada (sore back) was fine, one day after a minor league game in which he struck out four in two innings. Gibbons said it hasn’t been determined if Estrada’s next start will be in a minor or major league game.
Yankees: C Brian McCann missed his second straight game with a bruised left knee but is scheduled to play Thursday against Pittsburgh. … Alex Rodriguez said he was OK after being hit by a pitch on his left foot during the sixth.
The Yankees had a sign posted in the clubhouse offering nicotine replacement therapy supplies — gum, lozenges or patches — for players and staff. Smokeless tobacco is now banned at stadiums in Boston, San Francisco and Los Angeles. "It’s not healthy, it’s dangerous," said Girardi, who expects the list of chewing tobacco-free stadiums to rise.
Blue Jays: Toronto has a split-squad Thursday with Brad Penny starting against Houston. Scott Diamond will face Team Canada.
Yankees: Masahiro Tanaka will look to extend his spring training stretch of five shutout innings in his third start Thursday against the Pirates. Luis Severino also is scheduled to pitch.