I'm not sure if its because I've only just got my first (Escort) ship as Lt Cmdr but I am getting hammered by Worvig and D7 battlecruiser after he tries to hide with his Cloak. I havent got the weapons/consoles setup id like as I dont have any exploration awards to buy them. Do you generally have to wait until you find items as loot as I have done so far in the game?
Is it mainly because escorts have less shields?
I suggest asking some friends to go with you on the mission. I know, most people seem to think the 'story' missions are solo only, but it's much more fun with help. Plus, an escort has very limited shields, so you're going to die a lot without some backup.