Yankees 10, Tigers 3

Ivan Nova turned his game plan into a successful first

start.

Nova allowed an infield single over two scoreless innings and

the New York Yankees stopped a seven-game losing streak by beating

a Detroit Tigers split squad 10-3 on Saturday.

”I’m concentrating on attacking the strike zone, and I did

it,” Nova said. ”That’s what I’ve got to do, attack the strike

zone and then my team will do the rest.”

Trying to make the rotation after faltering down the stretch

last season, Nova struck out one during an outing in which he threw

22 of 27 pitches for strikes. The right-hander went 12-8 with a

5.02 ERA last year, down from 16-4 the year before.

”I thought his fastball command was really good,” Yankees

manager Joe Girardi said. ”Pleased with where he was at in his

first start. He needs to build on it. When you struggle, a lot of

times it’s difficult and you have to find a way to fight through

that. When he’s consistent, he’s dynamite.”

New York’s Brett Gardner had two singles, and has at least one

hit in all six of his spring training games this year. The speedy

outfielder also stole two bases, and scored to tie it 1-all on

Robinson Cano’s single after stealing second in the third.

Shawn Hill, signed by the Tigers as a minor league free agent

last October, gave up two runs and five hits in 2 2-3 innings. Omar

Infante had a third-inning sacrifice fly against David Aardsma.

The second run charged to Hill in the third came when Tigers

left-hander Kenny Faulk walked Travis Hafner with the bases

loaded.

The Yankees took a 4-2 lead in the fourth when Chris Stewart hit

a two-run homer off Kyle Lobstein.

Lobstein, a Rule 5 player that entered with a 9.82 ERA, struck

out four over two innings, including Mark Teixeira, Dan Johnson and

Hafner during a perfect fifth.

”He threw the ball a lot better,” Tigers coach Gene Lamont

said. ”Got one slider up.”

Teixeira went 1 for 3 in his final game before leaving to join

the United States’ team in the World Baseball Classic.

”I’m really excited about going,” Teixeira said. ”Excited

about competing, and it should be a blast. We have as good a chance

as anybody. We’re going there to win.”

Teixeira, known for offensive struggles in April, is hopeful

that playing in the WBC will be beneficial.

”It’s one of the reasons I’m playing,” Teixeira said. ”You

get a chance to play some exciting games, and hopefully jump start

the season.”

Cano is also leaving to play in the WBC for the Dominican

Republic.

New York travels to Fort Myers on Sunday to play Boston. Players

scheduled to make the trip include Gardner and Eduardo Nunez.

Right-hander Adam Warren will start against the Red Sox.

Yankees left-hander Andy Pettitte is scheduled for his first

simulated game Sunday in Tampa. Closer Mariano Rivera, coming off

knee surgery, will take part in his second simulated game.

Right-hander Phil Hughes will throw for the first time in two weeks

since being sidelined by a bulging disk in his upper back.

NOTES: New York bench coach Tony Pena, the Dominican Republic

manager, said former Detroit closer Jose Valverde and Yankees OF

Melky Mesa have decided not play in the classic. … The Tigers

agreed to terms on one-year contracts with RHP Luis Marte, LHP

Casey Crosby, INFs Dixon Machado, Hernan Perez and Danny Worth, and

OFs Quintin Berry and Avisail Garcia. … Yankees LHP Boone Logan

has a tender elbow and will not throw for a few days. … New York

minor league OF Slade Heathcott underwent an MRI for a sprained

right thumb, the result of an outfield collision Thursday with

Ronnier Mustelier. He will be reevaluated in a few days. … The

Yankees reassigned RHPs Corey Black, Matt Daley, Nick Goody, Shane

Greene, Bryan Mitchell, Zach Nuding, Mike O’Brien and Ryan Pope,

and INF Kyle Roller to their minor league camp.