His line: 6 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 K, 1 HB. While this was still a spring start, many of the O's regulars, including Vlad, Markakis, Adam Jones, Luke Scott, Matt Wieters, started the game and got three at-bats each.
This should all but lock up that 4th spot in the rotation for the kid. Here's more on the story from Brian Costello:
Yankees manager Joe Girardi stopped short of pronouncing Nova the first winner of the pitching sweepstakes, but he sounded as if he was very impressed.Great start by Nova, and barring injury I'd be shocked if he wasn't in the rotation come opening day.
"That's as good as it gets," Girardi said. "It's the best pitching performance probably we've had in spring training."
After hitting the first batter of the game, Nova allowed just one more base runner and that came on an error by Alex Rodriguez. Nova's final line was six innings, no hits, no runs, no walks, four strikeouts and the one hit batsman.
"I keep working hard," Nova said. "I try [not to] think too much about [the competition]. I just keep focused and pitch my game every time I go out there."
Nova and catcher Russell Martin saw his slider was working in the bullpen before the game. Both men seemed surprised at how effective it was, and Nova used it to get strikeouts.
"My slider is like a new toy," he said. "You've got to start playing with it sometime."
"He impressed me out there and I think he impressed himself," Martin said. "It's hard to have a much better outing than that. He showed it last year that he can pitch in the big leagues. With a start like this, it could just go into the season in the right direction."