Slow start to spring not new for Kuroda

Slow start to spring not new for Kuroda

Slow start to spring not new for Kuroda
TAMPA, Fla. -- Hiroki Kuroda's biggest critic may have been himself during Monday's 4-3 loss, as the Yankees right-hander came away unimpressed by his start against the Astros at George M. Steinbrenner Field.

The 37-year-old hurler held Houston scoreless on two hits over three innings, walking two and striking out two. Kuroda threw 24 of 42 pitches for strikes.

"I don't think I had all my stuff today," Kuroda said through an interpreter. "Nothing was really consistent. My two-seamer wasn't there, my cutter wasn't really cutting."

Yankees manager Joe Girardi said that he thought Kuroda wasn't as consistent as he had been in his first spring start, against the Rays on Wednesday, when he was hit for three runs in two innings.

Girardi said that he was pleased that Kuroda navigated his workload without permitting any runs.

"I think that's all the experience that he has had over the years, that he knows how to find a way to get through it," Girardi said. "You're not going to have your 'A' stuff every time you go out there, and you've got to find a way. I think he is good at doing that."

Kuroda said that a slow spring start is not unusual for him.

"I think usually the first half of Spring Training is not really good," he said. "I start to warm up in the latter half."