Burnett strong to start second stint with Bucs

Right-hander tosses two scoreless innings in spring debut

Burnett strong to start second stint with Bucs

BRADENTON, Fla. -- The Rays and Pirates ended in a 1-1, 10-inning deadlock on Saturday at McKechnie Field. The game drew 8,303, the Pirates' second straight sellout and fourth largest McKechnie Field crowd ever.

The Pirates tied it at 1 when Steve Lombardozzi led off the eighth with a double and eventually scored when catcher Justin O'Conner's pickoff attempt to third hit him on the helmet for a throwing error.

Corey Brown had homered with one out in the eighth inning to snap a scoreless tie.

Brown jumped on a 2-and-2 fastball from Brad Lincoln for his first homer of the spring.

Tampa Bay Opening Day starter Alex Cobb and lefties Everett Teaford and Grayson Garvin each hurled two shutout innings.

Cobb allowed one hit across two shutout innings, striking out two.

"It was better than in years past," Cobb said of his first exhibition outing. "You always feel great. You get so accustomed to throwing bullpens and being good at bullpens and being good at live BP that it takes a little bit to be comfortable in a game situation. ... We're looking to get our feet wet. If we're able to stay within ourselves and have some good results, it's a bonus."

A.J. Burnett matched Cobb, blanking the Rays on one hit for two innings in his return appearance with the Pirates.

"It's the best I felt in a long time," Burnett said. "Just being back with these guys and hearing the fans ... it just felt right."

Nick Kingham, Tony Watson, Jared Hughes and Antonio Bastardo continued to keep the Rays scoreless.

Burnett opted out of the second year of his Philadelphia contract to return to Pittsburgh, where he'd spent 2012-13, for his 17th and what he has already said will be his final season.

Up next: The Pirates will make a return trip on Sunday to Dunedin, Fla., to face Toronto and right-hander Aaron Sanchez at 1:07 p.m. ET, live on MLB.TV. Casey Sadler, the Bucs' "designated" pitcher in Florida Auto Exchange Stadium, will make his second start on the same mound he made his first; he no-hit the Blue Jays for two innings on March 3. Catcher Francisco Cervelli and right fielder Gregory Polanco are regulars penciled into the early lineup.

Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog Change for a Nickel. Follow him on Twitter @Tom_Singer. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.