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Irabu Tastes Defeat

Associated Press

The baseball world is still waiting to see if Hideki Irabu is all he’s cracked up to be.

Irabu’s crackling fastball didn’t do much damage to the Milwaukee Brewers’ popgun offense on Sunday night, and neither did any of his other pitches.

To chants of “Over-rated!” and Queen’s “We will rock you!” Irabu fizzled in his major league road debut as the Brewers pounded the Japanese right-hander in a 6-2 victory over the New York Yankees.

“I think it’s going to take about five or six more starts to see his full arm strength. And I don’t think it’s fair to judge his fastball at this time,” Yankees catcher Joe Girardi said.

In a game broadcast across America and Japan, Irabu was rocked for six earned runs on seven hits in 6-2/3 innings as the Brewers handed him his first major league loss and raised his ERA from 5.40 to 6.38.

Dave Nilsson homered, doubled and drove in three runs off Irabu, who was overshadowed by Milwaukee left-hander Scott Karl, who allowed eight hits in his first complete game of the season.

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