Tonight the Yankees find them in a position many fans would have thought impossible just two weeks ago: to sweep a four-game series. There’s no need to chronicle how the Yanks got to this point. Suffice it to say that I hope they can find another way to win tonight. Walk-offs are great, but the emotional burden leading up to it is sometimes too much.
The matchup this evening feature a pair of lefties, Andy Pettitte and Glen Perkins. The Twins’ lefty has made three starts against the Yankees in his career, all of which came last year. He threw 18 innings total, allowing 10 runs and 22 hits while walking six. These numbers might come as a surprise to those who tend to remember only the latest performance. On August 11 Perkins fired eight scoreless frames in a 4-0 Twins victory. Yet most people forget that the Yanks bombed him for five runs in six innings on July 23, and rocked him for 10 hits and five runs in four innings on May 30. For what it’s worth, Perkins hasn’t allowed fewer than four earned runs in an appearance since April 19.
There are a few pregame notes to cover before the lineups. First, the Pirates have raided the Yanks farm system again, this time claiming Steven Jackson off waivers. That gives the Pirates five former Yankee farmhands on their 40-man roster: Jackson, Eric Hacker, Ross Ohlendorf, Jeff Karstens, and Jose Tabata. They also have Dan McCutchen floating around in their system.
The good news is that Brian Bruney will come off the disabled list tomorrow and retake his 8th inning role. Hopefully he can jump right back into it, as the Yanks could use the bullpen help. Mike thinks they’ll DFA Angel Berroa as a corresponding move, but that would bring the team back to the ridiculous 13-man staff. With the starters pitching well and with Aceves in the bullpen, this seems horribly unnecessary. My hope is that they’ll option Edwar so he can get some regular innings in Scranton.
Also, Brett Gardner is day to day as a result of, what else, his dive into home — and into Joe Mauer. Gardner woke up a bit sore this morning, and an MRI revealed a contusion on his right rotator cuff. Presumably he’s still available to pinch run this evening.
1. Derek Jeter, SS
2. Johnny Damon, LF
3. Mark Teixeira, 1B
4. Alex Rodriguez, DH
5. Nick Swisher, RF
6. Robinson Cano, 2B
7. Melky Cabrera, CF
8. Ramiro Pena, 3B
9. Francisco Cervelli, C
And on the mound, number forty-six, Andy Pettitte.
If live-blogging’s your bag, you can check out regular commenter Bryan V’s blog. If it’s not, well, there’s always the game thread right here. I hear it’s pretty good.