Yankees @ Blue Jays Series PreviewPosted: April 19, 2011
The Yankees have been playing very well lately. They have won four out of their last five games and four out of five series to start the season. This sits them at 9-5 and in first place in the American League East. However, they have proven they can win at home (8-3), but tomorrow, they will start their first multi-city road trip of the year. On Tuesday and Wednesday, they will play Toronto in a two game set for the first time.
The Blue Jays have gotten off to an okay start. Jose Bautista and Yunel Escobar have headlined the offense being the only hitters hitting over .300. Bautista also leads the team with three homers. As a whole, the offense has gotten off to a rough start. Last year, this part of the team carried them, but in the early going, it has been a different story. They rank 18th in the MLB in batting average (.246), 19th in OBP (.315), 16th in homers (13), and 14th in total bases (208). The Bombers are ahead in all of these categories. Here’s a look at their projected lineup:
- Yunel Escobar, SS
- Corey Patterson, CF
- Jose Bautista, RF
- Adam Lind, 1B
- Adam Hill, 2B
- JP Arencibia, C
- Travis Snider, LF
- Edwin Encarnacion, DH
- Jayson Nix, 3B
Pitching wise, the Jays pitching has been pretty solid both in the rotation and the bullpen. Ricky Romero, Kyle Drabek, and Jesse Litsch have led the staff with ERA’s each below four. In the pen, Jon Rauch is three for three in save opportunities and Shawn Camp, Jason Fraser, and Casey Janssen have all been splendid. This is the first time that Toronto has had a stable closer in some time. Here are the projected pitching match-ups:
Kyle Drabek (1-0, 1.93 ERA) vs. AJ Burnett (3-0, 4.67 ERA)
Brett Cecil (1-1, 6.19 ERA) vs. Bartolo Colon (0-1, 3.97 ERA)
In Tuesday night’s match-up, AJ Burnett will try to keep rolling and stay undefeated while the young Kyle Drabek (the main piece of the Roy Halladay deal) will try to keep his hot start going also. On Wednesday night, the Yankees will try to finally get to Brett Cecil as he usually baffles them. He has a great change up that seems to really throw hitters off. We will also be getting our first look at Bartolo Colon as a starter. This could be a good indicator as to how long he will last this season.
The last thing to look out for is when Alex Rodriguez returns to the Yankee lineup. Sure Eric Chavez will do a swell job filling in, but the lineup is just not the same without A-Rod. Joe Girardi says that he wants to play it safe so if there is still a little tightness, we might not see Alex in the lineup. However, by that time, he will have received 75 straight hours of rest and treatment.
So there we have it, the table is set. The Yanks will finally make their first trip north of the border to play the Blue Jays. It will be a 7:07 first pitch on our first MY 9 broadcast of the season.