Sheffield goes deep but Yanks lose

Sheffield goes deep but Yanks lose

at Tampa, Fla.
Thursday, March 30

Devil Rays at the plate: Second baseman Jorge Cantu drove in the tying and winning runs on a double to right with two out in the top of the ninth. Designated hitter Aubrey Huff singled in an insurance run one batter later. Huff drove in a run on a groundout to shortstop in the third inning. Russell Branyan hit his second home run of the spring in the first inning, a solo shot off Mike Mussina that just cleared the wall in right. He added a run-scoring double in the sixth. Left fielder Carl Crawford doubled, tripled and scored a run.

Yankees at the plate: Non-roster invitee Luis Garcia drove in a run on a sacrifice fly to right in the bottom of the eighth. Center fielder Johnny Damon and shortstop Derek Jeter hit back-to-back singles in the third and executed a double steal that brought home Damon with the first run. Gary Sheffield drove a 2-2 pitch from Edwin Jackson over the left-field wall in the sixth for his first home run of the spring. Jorge Posada doubled for the only other extra-base hit.

Devil Rays on the mound: Jackson looked sharp in his second straight start against New York. The right-hander scattered four hits and allowed two runs while striking out three and walking three. Right-hander Chris Childers pitched a scoreless inning of relief in the ninth, retiring the side in order.

Yankees on the mound: Mussina held the Rays to two runs on four hits and two walks through four innings. Left-hander Matt Smith was saddled with the loss after allowing three runs on four hits in the ninth inning. All three runs came with two outs.

Grapefruit League records: Yankees 14-16; Devil Rays 12-15-1.

Up next: The Yankees will fly to Arizona for two games against the Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Right-hander Chien-Ming Wang is scheduled to start for New York in Friday's 8:05 p.m. ET matchup. Wang is 1-0 with a 3.97 ERA in four starts this spring. After being hit in the leg by a Curtis Granderson grounder, Wang left his last outing having pitched just 2 1/3 innings. The Diamondbacks will counter with righty Kevin Jarvis.

Tampa Bay travels to Lakeland on Friday for a 1:05 p.m. ET game against the Tigers. Left-hander Mark Hendrickson will start for the Rays, followed by right-hander Doug Waechter. In his last outing, Hendrickson allowed three runs (two earned) on five hits in six innings of work. He struck out two and walked two. Tigers lefty Nate Robertson will counter in his seventh start of the spring.

Dawn Klemish is an associate reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.