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03/10/07 4:30 PM ET

Maholm struggles, Pirates fall to Yanks

Lefty starter allows three runs in spring debut

at Bradenton, Fla.
Saturday, March 10

Yankees at the plate: In the first inning, Robinson Cano's single knocked in the game's first run as the Yankees grabbed a 1-0 lead. With the bases loaded, Josh Phelps grounded into a force to knock in the second run, and Chris Basak's single knocked in the third that inning. In the ninth, pinch-hitter Eric Duncan homered with a runner aboard to break a 3-3 tie.

Pirates at the plate: Ronny Paulino doubled in the first, but he bettered that in the third when Paulino, who had three hits total, pounded a first-pitch fastball over the wall in left field to knock in two runs. An inning later, the Pirates tied the ballgame, 3-3, on Brad Eldred's double, Luis Matos' sacrifice bunt and Jose Castillo's RBI single. For the game, Eldred had a pair of doubles and a single.

Yankees on the mound: Left-hander Kei Igawa took the mound with a 3-0 lead, and while Igawa didn't give up any runs, he had his shaky moments. A too-sweet fastball led to a pair of runs in the third. But he made pitches when he needed to most, and ended his three-inning outing with a line that read: five hits, two runs and four strikeouts. Igawa turned a 3-2 lead over to right-hander Steven Jackson, who gave up the tying run. Left-hander Sean Henn picked up the save.

Pirates on the mound: Right-hander Ian Snell took over for left-hander Paul Maholm in the fourth, and Snell pitched flawlessly. He held the Yankees hitless over three innings. In contrast, Maholm struggled. In the first, he gave up three hits and issued a pair of walks. Those baserunners helped the Yankees score three times off Maholm, who was making his Grapefruit League debut. In all, the Pirates pitchers allowed the Yankees one hit over the next seven innings. That total changed in the ninth when Salomon Torres, who took the loss, gave up a two-run homer.

Grapefruit League records: Yankees 8-1; Pirates 3-7-1.

Up next: The Yankees return to Legends Field on Sunday afternoon to play the Indians. Right-hander Chien-Ming Wang will start for the Yankees; he'll face right-hander Fausto Carmona. As for the Pirates, they travel to Sarasota to meet the Reds. Left-hander Tom Gorzelanny will start for the Bucs, and he will face veteran left-hander Eric Milton.

Justice B. Hill is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.