Saturday, June 23, 2018
Sports

Pettitte to pitch an inning against Mets

TAMPA — Yankees LHP Andy Pettitte will see game action for the first time since ending his brief retirement when he pitches against the Mets in today's spring training finale.

Pettitte is set to go one inning at Steinbrenner Field. He called it a big step in his return after his workout Tuesday.

Pettitte ended a one-season retirement by agreeing to a minor league contract March 16. He could be ready to join the Yankees in May.

Pettitte threw his second simulated game Saturday and talked on the phone with pitching coach Larry Rothschild after a 25-pitch bullpen session Monday.

"I bounced back pretty good after that last one, so we feel like an inning would be good tomorrow," Pettitte said. "I realized I feel good enough to pitch."

Rothschild, the former Rays manager, was with the team on a four-game trip to Florida's east coast.

If his comeback is successful and he's added to the major-league roster, Pettitte would get a $2.5 million, one-year contract.

ROCKY FINISH: Yankees RHP Ivan Nova struggled with his fastball location and gave up five runs, eight hits and two walks in 22/3 innings in a 7-6 loss to the Mets. His spring ERA rose to 8.06.

It "was one of the worst days of my life," Nova said. "I wasn't pitching right. I felt good (Tuesday), but I couldn't throw my fastball for strikes and I couldn't locate my pitches, and I don't feel good about that."

The Yankees and Mets will meet during the regular season at Yankee Stadium on June 8-10 and at Citi Field on June 22-24.

Jays: Cecil farmed out

DUNEDIN — The Blue Jays demoted LHP Brett Cecil to Double-A New Hampshire a day after another rough spring outing.

RHP Roberto Coello was promoted from the minors to be part of Toronto's rotation.

The Blue Jays said RHP Kyle Drabek had the fifth starting spot. LHP Aaron Laffey was moved to Triple-A Las Vegas.

Cecil was tagged for nine runs in the first two innings Monday against Detroit. Cecil had a 6.48 ERA in exhibitions this year and was 4-11 with a 4.73 ERA last season.

Cecil said the move was expected after his past two starts didn't go well.

"I really gave them no choice. I really didn't help myself out any," Cecil said

Manager John Farrell said Cecil needs a few more starts to gain consistent command.

RECORD SPRING: With a 13-8 win over the Tigers, the Blue Jays ended at 24-7-1, their most spring wins ever.

Phils: No Utley

PHILADELPHIA — 2B Chase Utley will be in Arizona rehabilitating his injured knees when the Phillies open the regular season on Thursday in Pittsburgh.

The five-time All-Star is starting his second straight season on the disabled list. General manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said Utley will work with physical therapist Brett Fischer and other medical personnel.

Amaro said before the Phillies' exhibition game against the Pirates that Utley is progressing, but there is no timetable for his return.

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