Phelps shuts down Rays before Yankees tie 3-3

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David Phelps pitched five scoreless innings as the Yankees ended up in a tie with the Rays, 3 runs apiece at George M. Steinbrenner Field Sunday afternoon.

Phelps, who is a contender for the fifth spot in the rotation, pitched a gem, giving up no runs on three hits in five innings. 39 of Phelps’s 53 pitches were called strikes.

The Yankees scored their three runs late in the game; a SAC fly by Brian Roberts in the seventh inning, an error in the eighth inning and wild pitch in the ninth inning.

Dellin Betances pitched a scoreless sixth for the Yankees as he comes to camp with a legitimate chance to make the Yankees bullpen. He’s doing a good job at keeping eyes wide open, giving up no runs in 6.1 innings this Spring. Betances threw a slider/slurve six times in a row during today’s game to prevent the runner at second base from scoring and impressed manager Joe Girardi.

“(It showed me) that he trusts it, that he has confidence in it, that he knows that he can get people out with it,” Girardi said. “That’s important because you’re going to have to do it at this level. You’re going to have to throw it behind in counts. You have to throw at any time because relievers are often put into tough situations. … He’s throwing the ball well, doing what he needs to do to give himself an opportunity.”

Derek Jeter flashed the glove defensively as he fielded ground ball after ground ball. Needless to say, Derek Jeter looked like vintage Derek Jeter.

What’s Next?

— The Yankees have a day-off tomorrow, but baseball will return on Tuesday as Mark Teixeira, Brett Gardner, Jacoby Ellsbury and Brian McCann make the trip to Vienna, Florida to play the Washington Nationals at 1:05 p.m. on MLB.TV. CC Sabathia will get the start for the Yankees and Jordan Zimmerman will get the start for the Nationals.

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