Tampa, Fla. - The Tampa Yankees (4-7) struggled trying to get runners in scoring position against the Dunedin Blue Jays (8-3) on Monday night at George M. Steinbrenner Field. Dunedin's starting pitcher Scott Copeland (1-0) allowed just two Tampa runners to reach second base in a 3-1 win.
The Blue Jays scored twice in the first to grab an early lead. A two-base error placed Andy Burns on second. Brett Lawrie, who was on a rehab assignment from the Toronto Blue Jays, then blasted a triple to deep centerfield to drive in a run. Later in the inning, an RBI single by Gabe Jacobo drove in Lawrie to give Dunedin a 2-0 lead.
Yankees starting pitcher Bryan Mitchell (0-1) pitched five innings, allowing two runs (one earned) on four hits and two walks while striking out two.
Tampa would get one back in the bottom of the first. After a leadoff single by Mason Williams, Ali Castillo's sacrifice bunt put Williams on second. A single by Ben Gamel pushed the runner to third. Gary Sanchez then hit a sacrifice fly to pull the Yankees within one, 2-1.
Copeland became the first Florida State League pitcher to throw a complete game this season. The Blue Jays sinkerball pitcher finished with nine innings pitched, allowing one run on six hits and one walk while striking out six.
Dunedin would tack on an insurance run in the sixth. After a one out double by Matt Newman, Tampa reliever Sean Black issued back-to-back walks to load the bases. Nick Baligod would drive in Newman with a fielder's choice to give the Blue Jays a 3-1 lead.
The series continues on Tuesday when the Yankees host Dunedin at 7 p.m. RHP Corey Black is scheduled to start for Tampa. Fans can enjoy Tijuana Flats 2 for Tuesday with "2-for-1" deals on tickets, programs, speed pitch and select concession items.