Tigers closer Rodriguez makes lone appearance before WBC
The next time Francisco Rodriguez pitches in a game, he figures to be a little more fired up.
The Detroit closer had control trouble Saturday in his only action before joining Venezuela for the World Baseball Classic, walking two in a brief stint.
Rodriguez had been scheduled to take the mound Wednesday, but the outing was pushed back due to hamstring tightness. Instead, he relieved in the fifth inning against the New York Yankees and exited with the bases loaded and two outs.
''Overall, I feel great,'' Rodriguez said. ''My body feels great. Threw the pitches I normally do during the season, which is what I care about.''
The right-hander started the inning by getting a flyball from Starlin Castro and striking out Chase Headley on a 3-2 pitch. After walking Ronald Torreyes on a full count and giving up Clint Frazier's single, Rodriguez's day ended when Dustin Fowler drew a walk that loaded the bases.
''Lost my command with the third batter, and after that couldn't put it together,'' Rodriguez said. ''I wanted to throw strikes. I took velocity off to try and locate, and that's when I pretty much lost my command.''
All three runners wound up scoring after Jairo Labourt took over. The Yankees won 11-1.
Rodriguez will be with Venezuela when it opens the WBC on Friday against Puerto Rico in Mexico.
''A little more adrenaline,'' Rodriguez said. ''I'm going to let it fly, obviously.''
AROUND THE GRAPEFRUIT AND CACTUS LEAGUES
NATIONALS 1, CARDINALS 1, 9 INNINGS
Washington starter Gio Gonzalez induced two double plays in three shutout innings, allowing one hit and one walk. Prospect Andrew Stevenson robbed Jedd Gyorko with a leaping catch at the wall in right field.
Cardinals starter Lance Lynn, who missed all of 2016 after Tommy John surgery, gave up an unearned run on two hits over four innings. Minor leaguer Patrick Wisdom tied it with a solo shot in the bottom of the ninth.
METS 3, ASTROS 1
In Jacob deGrom's first start of any kind since an elbow injury on Sept. 1 and subsequent ulnar nerve surgery, he hit 97 mph on the radar and went six up, six down on 26 pitches against the Astros' opening day lineup. Carlos Beltran hit his second home run for Houston.
ORIOLES 1, RAYS 0
Tampa Bay's Chris Archer struck out five over three perfect innings in his final tuneup before the World Baseball Classic.
Ubaldo Jimenez went three scoreless innings on three this and a walk. In the seventh, Chris Johnson led off with a double, pinch-runner Joey Rickard moved to third on a wild pitch and then scored on Logan Schafer's groundout.
PIRATES 3, RED SOX 2
Productive all-purpose player Josh Harrison of Pittsburgh announced he would play for the U.S. team at the WBC as a replacement for Cardinals infielder Matt Carpenter.
David Freese and Jose Osuna hit RBI singles and Andrew McCutchen had a hit and a sacrifice fly.
Boston's Chris Young hit a two-run homer off Wade LeBlanc.
PHILLIES 7, BRAVES (ss) 4
Atlanta starter Aaron Blair came out after facing one batter after he was hit on the left wrist on a comebacker. Josh Collmenter took over and went three scoreless innings, allowing three hits.
Maikel Franco had an RBI single and Chris Coghlan added a two-run double for Philadelphia. Starter Jerad Eickhoff allowed two earned runs and three hits over three innings.
TWINS 6, BLUE JAYS 2
Miguel Sano homered, singled and drove in two runs for Minnesota. Drew Stubbs drove in two with a double and Max Kepler doubled twice. Starter Ervin Santana gave up five hits and a walk, but got through three innings scoreless.
Toronto starter Casey Lawrence allowed a run on two hits and a walk over two innings.
YANKEES 11, TIGERS 1
Michael Pineda struck out five straight batters, four on sliders, in his spring debut for the Yankees. Gary Sanchez, who hit 20 home runs in 53 games in his rookie season, had a two-run shot off Anibal Sanchez.
Aaron Hicks also homered off Sanchez, tagged for four earned runs on five hits and two walk in 1 2/3 innings.
Tigers starter Justin Zimmermann pitched two scoreless innings.
MARLINS 8, BRAVES (ss) 6
Dee Gordon led off the game with a rare home run and Miguel Rojas scored two with a double later in a four-run first off Atlanta starter R.A. Dickey.
Dansby Swanson hit a two-run single for Atlanta.
INDIANS 15, ATHLETICS 5
Lonnie Chisenhall homered and doubled, and Brandon Guyer and Erik Gonzalez also homered for Cleveland. Indians starter Mike Clevenger was roughed up for four earned runs on five hits and a walk over two innings.
Oakland starting prospect Chad Manaea surrendered four runs on five hits and a walk in 1 2/3 innings.
ROYALS (ss) 9, REDS 7
Reds starter Scott Feldman threw three scoreless with three strikeouts. Reliever Drew Storen gave up two homers and five runs in one inning.
Kansas City reliever Jonathan Sanchez gave up five hits and seven earned runs without recording an out.
WHITE SOX 10, ANGELS 2
Chicago starter Lucas Giolito, acquired in a big offseason trade with Washington for Adam Eaton, struck out three and gave up just one hits in three innings.
Angels starter Tyler Skaggs walked four and allowed three unearned runs without giving up a hit while getting only two outs.
CUBS 9, DODGERS 3
Manager Joe Maddon, Anthony Rizzo, Ben Zobrist and Kyle Schwarber were among a group of Cubs that shaved their heads in the annual Respect Bald event to benefit cancer research. Kris Bryant hit a grand slam and Kyle Hendricks pitched two scoreless innings.
Reigning NL Rookie of the Year Corey Seager was sidelined again, missing action with upper back tightness. He missed three days earlier in the week with a right shin bruise. Chase Utley doubled singled and drove in two runs.
ROYALS (ss) 2, GIANTS 0
Lorenzo Cain hit a two-run homer and Kansas City starter Jason Hammel pitched two scoreless innings, allowing two hits.
Giants first base coach Jose Alguacil needed surgery to repair a broken nose after he was hit by a foul ball while sitting in a folding chair outside the dugout. He was carted off the field and taken to a hospital after being struck in the face. San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy said Alguacil told him he felt fine. The Giants said Alguacil had surgery to address the nose and a ''deep laceration.'' He also has small fractures in his eye socket.
BREWERS 7, RANGERS 1
Keon Broxton hit a three-run homer and an RBI triple for Milwaukee. Texas starter Chi Chi Gonzalez gave up one earned run on three hits, striking out two, over three innings.
PADRES 6, DIAMONDBACKS 5
Arizona starter Patrick Corbin gave up two earned runs on three hits and two walks.
Collin Cowgill drove in two with a double and Travis Janikowski tripled in a run for San Diego.
MARINERS 4, ROCKIES 3
Yovanni Gallardo rebounded from a rough spring debut to go three shutout innings for Seattle, allowing one hit and striking out three. Mike Zunino homered off Rockies starter Jon Gray, who gave up just that one hit in two innings.
Ian Desmond drilled a two-run shot for Colorado.