Phil Hughes’ return couldn’t have started out much worse.
The righty came off the DL to make his first start since April 14 — and promptly walked the leadoff hitter and gave up back-to-back singles.
The Yankees lost, 5-3, and will return home to face Tampa this weekend.
By the time the bottom of the first was over, Hughes had added a wild pitch and two runs scored as well.
Hughes settled down, but it was too late thanks to the anemic Yankees offense. Derek Jeter went 1-for-3 in his quest to reach 3,000 hits, but he was one of the few to reach base. The Yankees managed just three hits through eight innings off former Red Sox Justin Masterson (7-6).
The top three hitters in the Indians’ lineup meanwhile were 4-for-9 with two runs scored. Indians rookie Lonnie Chisenhall hit his first career home run.
Hughes (0-2) took the loss, but his much maligned fastball velocity did increase from his early season struggles. He was in the 92-94 mph range most of the night. He threw 88 pitches (57 strikes) and was removed after five innings.
The Yankees scored three runs in the ninth before Chris Perez closed it out.