The Yankees have won 12 of their last 15 and currently sit a half game behind Boston for first in the AL East. The Indians sit at the bottom of the AL Central but just completed a four-game sweep of Tampa Bay, the American League defending champs.
The last time these two teams met, it was April 16-19, the first series ever played at the New Yankee Stadium. The teams alternated wins, with the Indians capturing the first and third, while the Bronx Bombers took the second and fourth games. You might remember the third game was a 22-4 beat down by Cleveland.
This time, the series shifts to Cleveland’s Jacobs Field for a four game set – the last time these two teams are scheduled to face each other all season.
Game 1: Tonight @ 7:05 p.m. | TV/Radio: YES, WCBS 880
LHP Andy Pettitte (4-1, 4.30 ERA) vs. LHP Cliff Lee (2-5, 3.04 ERA)
Game 2: Tomorrow @ 7:05 p.m. | TV/Radio: YES, WCBS 880
LHP CC Sabathia (4-3, 3.42 ERA) vs. RHP Fausto Carmona (2-4, 6.42 ERA)
Game 3: Sunday @ 12:40 p.m. | TV/Radio: YES, TBS, WCBS 880
RHP Phil Hughes (3-2, 5.16 ERA) vs. RHP Carl Pavano (4-4, 6.10 ERA)
Game 4: Monday @ 7:05 p.m. | TV/Radio: YES, ESPN, WCBS 880
RHP Joba Chamberlain (2-1 3.70) vs. Jeremy Sowers (1-2, 7.71)
Friday marks the return of Jorge Posada from the DL. Posada was hitting well (.312, 5 HR and 20 RBI) for the Yankees before he took 22 games off because of a strained hammy. Posada will most likely not be behind the plate every game this series.
Mariano Rivera has been well rested this week. While taking 2 of 3 from the AL West leading Texas Rangers, the Yankees never needed Mo. He’ll most likely make an appearance Friday night, if not just by statistical chance the score will be close enough.
Saturday will be CC Sabathia‘s first time pitching in Cleveland since he was traded to Milwaukee last summer. Sabathia got off to a rough start with the Yankees, but has won three of his last four starts, pitching very well in all four.
Finally, the Yankees come into the game with some streaks on the line. Both Derek Jeter and Mark Teixeira come in with hitting streaks, Jeets with an 11-game and Tex with a 10-game. Its been 13 games and 51 at bats since Robinson Cano has struck out. The entire team has been error-free for the last 14 games, a franchise record.
UPDATE 11:13 PM 5/29/09 – Apparently the Indians now play at Progressive Field, renamed from Jacob’s Field. Apparently, its been called Progressive Field since before last season. Where was I?