The New York Yankees are looking ahead to the future with Derek Jeter kicking off his final season and the loss of Mariano Rivera. On March 1, USA Today shared the latest comments made by Masahiro Tanaka. He is the new addition to the pitching rotation for the team. He made his Yankees debut during Saturday's spring training game against the Philadelphia Phillies. Tanaka played two shut out innings before he left the game. During those innings, he struck out three. He said the following about his debut:
I felt pretty good out there. I was nervous, but it was a really good nervousness. I'm relieved to be able to throw against the batters over here.
According to Fox Sports, Tanaka will next be seen on the pitching mound on Thursday. The game was seen live in Japan, but Tanaka did not thing his family would be watching. The New York Yankees are currently in transition mode. With Derek Jeter announcing his retirement at the end of this season and Mariano Rivera's retirement at the end of last season, things are changing. Rivera even admitted that he was surprised by Jeter's announcement.
Derek Jeter did play during Saturday's game, but Joe Girardi said that he tried to keep the player 'under the radar.' Did the Yankees not want to have the focus on Jeter during Tanaka's debut? This baseball team is definitely trying to plan for the future and make themselves a contender once again.
What do you think about the departure of Jeter? Did you see Tanaka's debut on Saturday?