A-Rod hits homer

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A-Rod_HomerMarch 3, 2016


Philadelphia Phillies vs. New York Yankees

George M. Steinbrenner Field

Tampa, Florida


By:  Rocky Julich


The A-Rod Home Run


The Philadelphia Phillies left their Bright House Field in Clearwater and crossed the Courtney Campbell Causeway to Tampa to play the New York Yankees second game of during Spring Training.


While the Phillies have been getting lots of media attention regarding rebuilding, at Steinbrenner Field, there was no real mention regarding the issue, “tanking”.


As expected from the visiting team, the Phillies put on the field and pitched a line-up of Rookies and non-roster players.  No matter, it was a 15 hits, 13 runs scored by Phillies game vs. the Yankees 6 hits, 4 runs scored.


During the first inning, the Phillies starter, Rookie LHP Adam Morgan faced his challenge with the Yankees starting line-up which included rightfielder Carlos Beltran, DH Alex Rodriguez and first baseman Mark Teixiera.  Morgan threw Beltran a good pitch to hit to get on base with a single.  The next batter was a Rookie pitcher’s dream come true, to pitch to Alex Rodriguez.  The first pitch was a ball.  The second pitch was simply in the right place for A-Rod to use his signature swing to send the ball flying near the 318” left field wall.


“It certainly was surprising” A-Rod said.  “That was the last thing I was expecting.  I haven’t taken a swing in live pitching, that was my first one.  It caught me by surprise.”


Rodriguez allowed himself a few extra moments to watch the homer clear the wall in left before beginning his homerun trot.  After coming out of the game and speaking to the media in the Clubhouse in front of his locker he said that he “enjoyed the trip around the bases”.


RHP Ivan Nova made is first start of Spring Training.  In his second year back from Tommy John Surgery, the 6’5” 235 lb. pitcher from Palenque, D.R., in his seventh season with the Yankees, is competing with CC Sabathia as the Yankees No. 5 starter.


It was the first opportunity for Gary Sanchez as catcher for Ivan Nova.  After the game Nova praised his catcher.  “He was good, I like the way he catch”.  “His return was real nice”.   “I told him “don’t be afraid to call the pitches that you want me to throw”.  “He was great”.


It was a typical early Spring Training game.  Philadelphia used 17 players, including five pitchers.  RHP Alec Asher, RHP Mark Appel, LHP Daniel Stumpf, RHP Edwar Mujica.


The most recognizable, non-roster invitee RHP Mark Appel.  The No. 1 selection by the Houston Astros from the 2013 Major League Baseball Draft enters his 4th professional season as a non-roster invitee to Spring Training, this season showing with Philadelphia.


The Yankees used 26 players, including eight pitchers.  RHP Diego Moreno, LHP Jacob Lindgren, RHP Anthony Swarzak, LHP James Pazos, RHP Branden Pinder, LHP Tyler Webb, RHP Brady Lail.

Jacob Lindgren was the loosing pitcher (0-1).


The most notable change in the line-up, DH Alex Rodriguez.  The Yankees have no plans to play the 40-year-old in the field and A-Rod has accepted his new assignment as a full-time designated hitter.  Rodriguez explained after his first game of Spring that he has modified his training so as to avoid wearing down late in the season.  He added, “the biggest thing is, I don’t have any distractions and understand my purpose on the team.”


It was a Spring Training game of Player Development at the Major League Baseball level.


Final:  Phillies 13 – Yankees 4

WP:     Alec Asher (1-0)

LP:      Jacob Lindgren  (0-1)

Time:  3:14

Attendance:    7,897


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This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues  or its clubs.

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