HOUSTON (AP) — Derek Jeter began the first game of his final season by getting plunked with a pitch. The Astros then beat up on CC Sabathia even worse, ensuring the captain's farewell tour would start with a Yankees' loss.
Jesus Guzman and L.J. Hoes homered off Sabathia to help the Houston Astros roll to a 6-2 win against New York on Tuesday night.
"Trying to get your first win, your first hit, your first run, anything is kind of difficult to do," Jeter said. "The first, sometimes, is tough to come by."
Jeter was hit on the left arm by Scott Feldman in his first at-bat and ended 1 for 3 with a single. The 13-time All-Star who helped New York to five World Series titles announced in February we would retire after his 20th season.
"I was a little extra anxious because I hadn't played in a while, but when I got hit, I think that actually helped," said Jeter, who missed most of last season with injuries.
The Astros added Dexter Fowler and Feldman to improve a team coming off three straight 100-loss seasons. On the first day, it worked.
Fowler had two doubles as Houston jumped on Sabathia for six runs in the first two innings. Feldman allowed two hits in 6 2-3 innings in his Houston debut after signing a three-year, $30 million contract
"This entire spring leading up to opening day we built that vibe up where these guys are confident, they're playing with a lot of energy, focus," manager Bo Porter said. "The attention to detail is outstanding. Everybody wants to get out to a good start."
Sabathia led the majors last season with 122 runs allowed and finished with a career-worst 4.78 ERA. Things went bad for him from the start on Monday night in a matchup of the league's youngest vs. oldest rosters.
"It got out of hand early," Sabathia said. "I've got 34 — hopefully more — starts left. I'm definitely not going to pitch like I did tonight in the first two innings. I know I can pitch. I love to get guys out. I feel great, so no I'm not going to beat myself up over this."
Yankees' manager Joe Girardi tried not to make too much of the loss.
"Well, it's not what you want, but I had a feeling we were going to lose a game at some point this year," he said. "So, we got it out of the way early."
Fowler, traded from Colorado this offseason, hit a leadoff double and scored on a one-out single by Jose Altuve that rolled just out of reach of a diving Jeter and into the outfield. Altuve made it 2-0 when he scored on a fielder's choice by Jason Castro later in the inning.
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