TAMPA, Fla. — Gary Sanchez provided a reminder that, yes, he can hit ’em a long way, too.
The catcher, overshadowed somewhat this spring by the hype surrounding Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge being in the same lineup, came up in the first inning Wednesday afternoon and sent a ball over the big scoreboard in left-center at Steinbrenner Field against the Tigers.
After Stanton collected his first hit of the spring, dumping one down the rightfield line, Sanchez annihilated the first pitch he saw from Tigers lefty Daniel Norris, which came in at 88 mph, and cleared the scoreboard for a two-run homer to make it 2-0.
Sanchez’s spring debut came Monday night and the 25-year-old ripped a double in his first at-bat.
Judge, making his first appearance of the spring – batting second as the day’s designated hitter – struck out on five pitches.
The afternoon’s lineup, featuring Brett Gardner leading off followed by Judge, Stanton, Sanchez and Greg Bird, perhaps was a preview of what it might look like for the season opener March 29 in Toronto.