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Igawa sharp in win

Kyodo

New York Yankees rookie Kei Igawa picked up his first win in his fourth spring training outing, pitching a two-hitter in five shutout innings against the Philadelphia Phillies on Tuesday.

Igawa (1-0) occasionally struggled with his control as in his previous starts, issuing three walks, while striking out three of the 19 batters he faced in the Yankees’ 2-0 victory.

Last Thursday, the former Hanshin Tigers left-hander walked four and struck out five in three innings against the Atlanta Braves. He has now gone eight innings without allowing a run, although his control problem lingers.

“Probably I’ll start two more games in spring training and hopefully I’ll take advantage of it to get myself fully prepared for the regular season,” Igawa said after the game.

Yankees outfielder Hideki Matsui went 2-for-3, including a double down the left-field line and a single to center field.

Meanwhile, in St. Petersburg, Fla., Tampa Bay Devil Rays rookie third baseman Akinori Iwamura had his first multihit day in major league spring training, going 2-for-4 with a pair of singles against the Cleveland Indians. He extended his hitting streak to four games.

Iwamura showed some frustration that he had been moved down to the eighth in the lineup, the lowest in his baseball career.

“I’m just hoping that I’ll improve more on myself and my performance will become convincing enough to take me higher in the batting order,” he said.