Masahiro Tanaka showed signs of brilliance in a win over the Blue Jays. (The Canadian Press)TORONTO — It was far from perfect but in his major-league debut Masahiro Tanaka showed the potential to be worth every penny the New York Yankees spent on him.
The Japanese pitching phenom earned the win and spoiled the Toronto Blue Jays’ home opener with a solid, and sometimes dominant, performance in his first game in North America. The Yankees roughed up Blue Jays pitching and won 7-3 in front of a sellout crowd of 48,197.
Blue Jays manager John Gibbons probably summed up Tanaka’s night best. “He’s the real deal.”
Tanaka’s night did get off to a rough start though.
Blue Jays leadoff hitter Melky Cabrera welcomed Tanaka to the major leagues with a solo home run to right field in the first inning.
“It was my mistake and I think Cabrera took a really good swing,” Tanaka said through an interpreter. But he wasn’t rattled as he got Colby Rasmus to ground out and struck out Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion to end the inning.
He hit another rough patch in the second when Dioner NavarroRead More »from Masahiro Tanaka starts slow but lives up to billing in major-league debut