Well, the Tigers take the field for today’s asphalt game with the hopes and dreams of Tigers fans who are ready to charge up the AL Central standings after two games. Count me in! Before we start printing our AL Central Division shirts let’s remember the week preceding these last two games, but it’s hard not to get excited. The Tigers have won the last two with timely hitting, outstanding starting pitching, and some shrewd lineup management. A long series win over the venerable Yankees would replenish a lot of the recently lost fan capital.
AperiordJperiod Burnett makes his seventh start of the season for the Yanks today. Burnett has been a pleasant surprise for the Yanks this year, considering that last year he set franchise highs for the highest single-season ERA for a starter (> 180 IPs). He has been taking advantage of great run support on his way to a 4-1 record (the Yanks are averaging 5 runs per game that he starts). On the season, Burnett has a 3.93 ERA, a 1.28 WHIP and a 2.33 K/BB ratio. His biggest flaw has been high pitch counts, which have left him with a 6 IP per start average.
Porcello looks to lock up the series for the boys today, and there is no reason to believe that he won’t (other than the fact that I just wrote that). After two starts which had him looking up the bus schedule to Toledo, Porcello has found his sinker and been downright filthy. Over his last three starts, Porcello has allowed 4 earned in 19 2/3 (1.83 ERA), posted a 1.07 WHIP, and K’d 17 against only 3 walks. Yeah, 17/3 K/BB. Note this is only the 2nd time in RPs career that he has posted 3 straight quality starts, the last coming in May of 2009.
Today’s double reverse jinx notes: The Yankees are the only AL team yet to lose 3 in a row, and they have not lost a series to an AL Central team since losing 3/4 to the Tigers in May of 2010. They are 9-0-2 in their series against AL Central teams since.
AJax, Avila and Peralta with the day off today:
1. Kelly CF
2. Sizemore 2B
3. Boesch RF
4. Cabrera 1B
5. Martinez C
6. Ordonez DH
7. Raburn LF
8. Inge 3B
9. Santiago SS