New York Yankees starting pitcher Chase Whitley delivers against the...

New York Yankees starting pitcher Chase Whitley delivers against the Tampa Bay Rays during the first inning of a baseball game at Yankee Stadium on Tuesday, April 28, 2015. Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

Chase Whitley can unpack his bags.

Whitley, Tuesday night's Yankees starter, was supposed to pitch this one game and then head back to Triple-A. But general manager Brian Cashman announced during the game that Masahiro Tanaka is heading to the 15-day disabled list with tendinitis in his right wrist and a mild forearm strain.

With Tanaka expected to miss a month, Whitley will get the first crack at filling in for more than one start. Tuesday night, Whitley allowed one run in five innings to pick up the win as the Yankees beat the Rays, 4-2, before 36,934 at Yankee Stadium.

"I just got out of the shower, so I don't know," Whitley said about his future.

But manager Joe Girardi confirmed: "Right now, he's in our rotation."

Whitley had been one of the Yankees' last cuts of spring training after he pitched to a 1.17 ERA. He was called up to make Tuesday night's spot start after going 2-0 with a 2.12 ERA for Triple-A Scranton / Wilkes-Barre.

The reason the Yankees inserted Whitley into the rotation was to give their five regular starters an extra day's rest. With Tanaka scratched from Wednesday's start, that plan will be shelved, too, as everyone will pitch on his normal day, beginning with Michael Pineda this afternoon against Tampa Bay.

Whitley, who went 4-3 with a 5.23 ERA for the Yankees in 2014, allowed six hits, walked one and struck out five. He threw 93 pitches.

"People have just got to step up," Girardi said. "That's the bottom line. Chase Whitley did a nice job tonight."

Brian McCann drove in three runs with a pair of doubles as the Yankees won their third in a row and seventh in eight games.

Alex Rodriguez was given the night off. He will continue his quest to tie Willie Mays with home run No. 660 Wednesday against lefthander Drew Smyly.

The Yankees scored twice in the first against Jake Odorizzi (2-2). Jacoby Ellsbury led off with a single, stole second and moved to third on a throwing error by catcher Rene Rivera before scoring on Brett Gardner's grounder to second.

Mark Teixeira and McCann followed with back-to-back doubles to make it 2-0.

The Rays got a run in the third when Steven Souza Jr. walked with one out and scored on Asdrubal Cabrera's double.

McCann made it 4-1 in the fifth when his double to left scored Ellsbury and Gardner. McCann is 10-for-15 with eight RBIs vs. Odorizzi. Rookie Rays manager Kevin Cash chose not to intentionally walk McCann with runners on second and third and slumping Carlos Beltran on deck.

After Whitley departed, the bullpen continued its recent strong showing, even though Girardi stayed away from Dellin Betances, Andrew Miller and Justin Wilson because of their recent workloads.

Chasen Shreve gave up a run in the sixth on a walk and a triple by Logan Forsythe. But Forsythe was stranded on third when Shreve struck out Kevin Kiermaier and Esmil Rogers struck out Tim Beckham and got Rivera to ground out to third.

Rogers struck out five in 22/3 scoreless innings. Chris Martin threw a scoreless ninth to earn his first career save.

"It was nerve-wracking," Martin said. "But I settled down once I got the first out."

More Yankees headlines