Tampa, Fla. - The Tampa Yankees (3-5) threatened early against Daytona Cubs (4-4) starter Austin Kirk, but could not crack the scoreboard in a 5-0 loss on Friday night at George M. Steinbrenner Field.
Shane Greene (0-1) breezed through the first two innings, but the Cubs mounted a rally with two down in the third. With Zeke DeVross at second, Taiwan Easterling doubled to right field to drive home the game's first run. Javier Baez followed with a single of his own to plate Easterling, making it 2-0 Daytona.
The Cubs pushed the final three runs across with two down in the fourth inning. With the bases loaded, Greene hit DeVross to bring home Stephen Bruno. Easterling followed with a two-run single.
Greene settled in to retire the last seven men he faced. He was charged with five runs on six hits across his six innings of work, walking one and striking out four.
Tampa put the leadoff man aboard in each of the first four frames. The Yankees had runners at first and second to start the fourth inning, but Kirk (1-0) bounced back to set down the next six men he faced. Kirk would work five scoreless innings, allowing two hits and four walks.
Ben Gamel accounted for two of Tampa's three hits on the evening. The Yankees' left fielder, came into tonight's game leading the club with a .393 average, went 2-for-4 with a double.
Tampa will look to even up the series on Saturday at 6 p.m., as Mikey O'Brien (0-1) takes the hill against P.J. Francescon (1-0). Saturday is also Teacher Appreciation Night sponsored by Sheraton Suites, as well as Friends and Family Night at George M. Steinbrenner Field, with a post-game fireworks show sponsored by Bright House Networks.