Giancarlo Stanton homered twice and drove in four runs in his Yankees debut and Luis Severino was masterful on the mound, leading New York to a 6-1 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays in Thursday’s season opener.
Severino (1-0) struck out seven and held Toronto to just one hit and three walks over 5 2/3 innings. Brett Gardner also homered and Gary Sanchez drove in another run for New York (1-0).
Veteran left-hander J.A. Happ (0-1), in his first career opening day start, threw 4 2/3 innings and allowed three runs (two earned), four hits and one walk while striking out five.
Kevin Pillar supplied Toronto’s (0-1) offence with a solo homer late.
All-star third baseman Josh Donaldson, who was slowed by a shoulder issue early in spring training, appeared to be struggling with weak throws across the diamond throughout the game, including one in the sixth inning that pulled first baseman Justin Smoak off the bag. Smoak recovered, stretching his toe to the base to get the out, which was upheld after video review.
A prolonged shoulder problem for Donaldson would spell bad news for Toronto, which placed shortstop Troy Tulowitzki on the 60-day disabled list with bone spurs in both his heels earlier in the day. Tulowitzki hasn’t played since sustaining an ankle injury last July.