Canada crushes the Yankees

March 5, 2009 5:54:49 PM PST
Joba Chamberlain walked four of the five batters he faced Thursday and failed to get an out in the first inning of the New York Yankees' 6-0 loss to Canada's World Baseball Classic team. Chamberlain also allowed a single and was lifted after walking his final three hitters. He wound up being charged with five runs in his second shaky start this spring.

"That's the best I felt physically all year, even from the get-go," Chamberlain said. "Just one of those days. Part of spring training. It was just mechanical, not getting over my front side. I wasn't up in the zone, which is always a good sign."

Justin Morneau and Jason Bay drew bases-loaded walks from Chamberlain, who gave up two runs and three hits in one inning during his first outing last weekend against Minnesota.

Matt Stairs hit a two-run double off reliever Jonathan Albaladejo during Canada's six-run first.

Chamberlain, scheduled to pitch two innings, was pulled after 28 pitches.

"If this continues, what we saw today, then you have some concerns," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "Joba is a guy that we talked about slowly building him up. I'm not concerned. Was it hard to watch today? That was hard to watch. It kind of set the tone for the game."

Scott Diamond didn't allow a hit in two scoreless innings for Canada. The left-hander went a combined 15-3 for Atlanta's Rome and Myrtle Beach Class-A teams last year during his first professional season.

Canada manager Ernie Whitt hasn't announced his lineup or starting pitcher for the WBC opener Saturday against the United States.

"I'm getting there," Whitt said. "(Friday) we'll sit down as a staff and we'll all speak our minds and try and put a little depth chart together, and situations that we will use the players."

Whitt thinks his players will be ready to play nine innings on Saturday.

"I think so," he said. "Unless they come and tell me that they're not, I expect them to play nine innings."

Canada will have a workout Friday in Toronto, the site of Pool C in the WBC. In addition to the U.S. and Canada, the other group members are Italy and Venezuela.

Yankees designated Hideki Matsui went 0-for-2 in his spring training debut. He is coming back from left knee surgery performed Sept. 22.

"Other than the results, I feel fine," Matsui said through a translator.

New York owner George Steinbrenner attended the game, which drew an announced crowd of 7,524.

Notes: New York closer Mariano Rivera (right shoulder surgery) had his first bullpen session. He expects to be ready for opening day. ... Yankees LHP CC Sabathia will make his first spring training start Friday night against Detroit. ... Canada bullpen coach Paul Quantrill plans to continue working with young players in Canada after the WBC, but has no current interest in becoming a coach for a major league organization. ... New York reliever Edwar Ramirez (right shoulder bursitis) threw 25 pitches during a bullpen session.