Young cruised through the first set in Rhode Island but his opponent surged back to take the second.
And though Young saved three match points in the third, he could not stop his compatriot progressing, winning the match 1-6 6-1 6-4.
Young would have been hoping for more time on the Newport grass ahead of his upcoming return to Wimbledon for the Olympics.
His United States team-mate Ryan Harrison, the sixth seed, was also stretched but came through his match with Ruben Bemelmans of Belgium 7-6 (10/8) 6-7 (5/7) 7-5.
Another American, Jack Sock, made it through to the second round by beating Russia's Igor Kunitsyn in three sets, while there were also wins for Nicolas Mahut, Olivier Rochus and Dudi Sela.