|DETROIT ( FISTER )|
NY YANKEES ( PETTITTE )
|AL Championship Series - Best of 7 - Game 1|
|901||DETROIT||+115||Ov 8,-120||+120||Ov 8,-120|
|902||NY YANKEES||-125||Un 8,+100||-130||Un 8,+100|
|vs Left-handed Starters||27-26||-8.5||21-29||4.1||0.261||0.328||4.4||0.260||0.315|
|Past 7 Games||4-3||+0.7||1-5||2.9||0.240||0.285||2.1||0.207||0.289|
|vs Right-handed Starters||61-43||+1.4||39-60||4.7||0.262||0.325||3.9||0.250||0.304|
|Past 7 Games||5-2||+2.1||2-5||4.9||0.260||0.333||2.1||0.191||0.232|
|9/29/2012||VERLANDER(R)||@ MINNESOTA||WALTERS(R)||6-4||W||-250||8 ev||O||8||5||1||6||9||1|
|9/30/2012||SANCHEZ(R)||@ MINNESOTA||HENDRIKS(R)||2-1||W||-160||9 un||U||7||6||0||10||11||0|
|10/1/2012||PORCELLO(R)||@ KANSAS CITY||CHEN(L)||6-3||W||-125||9 un||P||14||8||1||9||8||1|
|10/2/2012||FISTER(R)||@ KANSAS CITY||GUTHRIE(R)||2-4||L||-125||8.5 un||U||6||6||0||9||8||2|
|10/3/2012||SCHERZER(R)||@ KANSAS CITY||MENDOZA(R)||1-0||W||100||8.5 ev||U||7||7||0||6||11||0|
|10/9/2012||SANCHEZ(R)||@ OAKLAND||ANDERSON(L)||0-2||L||120||7 ov||U||4||4||0||5||4||0|
|10/10/2012||SCHERZER(R)||@ OAKLAND||GRIFFIN(R)||3-4||L||-105||7 ev||P||10||5||1||8||7||0|
|10/11/2012||VERLANDER(R)||@ OAKLAND||PARKER(R)||6-0||W||-130||6.5 un||U||9||7||0||4||4||1|
|10/13/2012||FISTER(R)||@ NY YANKEES||PETTITTE(L)|| |
|10/14/2012||SANCHEZ(R)||@ NY YANKEES||KURODA(R)|| |
|10/16/2012|| ||NY YANKEES|| || |
|10/17/2012|| ||NY YANKEES|| || |
|9/29/2012||PETTITTE(L)||@ TORONTO||ROMERO(L)||2-3||L||-180||8.5 un||U||9||10||0||7||6||2|
|9/30/2012||HUGHES(R)||@ TORONTO||ALVAREZ(R)||9-6||W||-160||9 un||O||15||9||0||10||8||1|
|10/7/2012||SABATHIA(L)||@ BALTIMORE||HAMMEL(R)||7-2||W||-160||7.5 un||O||10||8||1||8||7||1|
|10/8/2012||PETTITTE(L)||@ BALTIMORE||CHEN(L)||2-3||L||-130||8 un||U||9||10||1||7||6||1|
|10/16/2012|| ||@ DETROIT|| || |
|10/17/2012|| ||@ DETROIT|| || |
|DETROIT: HITTING: OF AUSTIN JACKSON doesn't make much contact, but manager Jim Leyland likes his speed in the leadoff spot. RYAN RABURN and RAMON SANTIAGO will split second base duties, with Raburn getting the majority of the starts. 3B MIGUEL CABRERA seems to have cleaned up his act. He's an MVP candidate. So is newcomer 1B PRINCE FIELDER who will try to keep slugging in his move to a pitchers' park. His presence was needed after DH VICTOR MARTINEZ was lost for the season with a knee injury. OF DELMON YOUNG is a pending free agent, and he hit well after escaping spacious Target Field. He'll nab the starting LF job but could also DH. OF BRENNAN BOESCH did enough pre-injury to earn an everyday role, but he'll again be in danger of fading over the summer. SS JHONNY PERALTA had a resurgence in 2011, and he's on the right side of 30. C ALEX AVILA might not hit for average, but his power is legit. Leyland favorite BRANDON INGE and DON KELLY will back up the All-Star corner infielders, so neither expect to get much playing time. Streaky OF ANDY DIRKS is a fourth outfielder. C GERALD LAIRD will spell Avila. |
STARTING PITCHING: You can't expect an identical stat line for JUSTIN VERLANDER; his opponent .236 batting average on balls in play suggests there was some luck involved in his MVP season. But he's still the best pitcher in the American League by a wide margin. DOUG FISTER's improved strikeout rate with the Tigers suggests he could sustain success as a quality No. 2 starter. MAX SCHERZER can still be outstanding when he's on, but he was inconsistent again last year. He could figure it out in his late-20s, but time is running out. RICK PORCELLO still has a ways to go. His mid-season success came against some weak lineups. He's still only 23, but he hasn't been able to beat hitters at any level in the pros. The Tigers are still searching for a No. 5 starter. Top prospect JACOB TURNER is only 20, but the Tigers haven't been shy about fast-tracking young arms. He was dominant in the minors, but torched in his first big-league stint. ANDY OLIVER appears to be the front-runner for this role, but DREW SMYLY is also a possibility.
RELIEF PITCHING: JOSE VALVERDE was perfect in 2011, but it was a surprising development considering his sliding K/BB ratio. For Tigers fans, he carries more risk than 49-for-49 would suggest. One of baseball's better set-up men, JOAQUIN BENOIT is an eighth-inning-only guy. He'd take over if Valverde got hurt. OCTAVIO DOTEL is another elite set-up man who will step up as the seventh-inning guy. As good as AL ALBURQUERQUE was in the regular season (one extra-base hit'a double'allowed in 43.1 innings!), he's out until at least the All-Star break after offseason elbow surgery. Lefty DANIEL SCHLERETH has a chance to be the closer of the future, but first he'll need to cut down on the walks.
|NY YANKEES: HITTING: Despite his decline from mediocrity into downright counter-productivity, SS DEREK JETER gets to hit atop the best lineup in baseball. Off an MVP-caliber season, OF CURTIS GRANDERSON is a true star. His average is mediocre, but his power is elite and the Yankees are letting him run when on base. After two years with a sub-.260 average, 1B MARK TEIXEIRA's talent seems to be fading. He still puts up huge power numbers playing in a bandbox. Coming off knee and thumb injuries, 3B ALEX RODRIGUEZ is a serious injury risk hitting in the middle of this lineup. 2B ROBINSON CANO will once again see as many RBI chances as anyone. He's been great in those situations the past two seasons. OFs NICK SWISHER and BRETT GARDNER offer power and SBs, respectively, though the Yankees may look to upgrade if they continue to post lackluster numbers. C RUSSELL MARTIN will get plenty of playing time now that Jesus Montero is in Seattle. Veteran slugger RAUL IBANEZ is the new DH in town, and will love hitting towards the short porch in right at Yankee Stadium. |
STARTING PITCHING: CC SABATHIA struggled late last year and has logged a ridiculous number of innings over the past five years. He's a top-10 starter in the majors, but is starting to pass his prime. Newcomers HIROKI KURODA and MICHAEL PINEDA will both stabilize what was a shaky rotation last year. Kuroda, 37, posted a 3.07 ERA with the Dodgers and the 23-year-old Pineda has unlimited upside, fanning 173 batters in 171 innings with Seattle last season. IVAN NOVA benefitted from nearly nine runs of support per game. He keeps the ball down often enough to thrive in the Bronx, just without many strikeouts. PHIL HUGHES' stuff has regressed greatly since his days as a top prospect. He's trying to overcome conditioning problems this offseason. MANNY BANUELOS and DELLIN BETANCES are great prospects who may get a chance to start MLB games later this season.
RELIEF PITCHING: Trust MARIANO RIVERA to stay dominant until proven wrong. He was better in 2011 than he was in 2010 despite some velocity slippage. DAVID ROBERTSON has a firm hold on eighth-inning duties after an All-Star season. He's second in line for saves. RAFAEL SORIANO wasn't a total bust, as he did just fine after a rough April. He's settled into the seventh-inning role since Robertson is more trusted that he is. After Tommy John surgery, JOBA CHAMBERLAIN is aiming to be back this June. Middle reliever CORY WADE was reliable last year, and has a chance to rack up some vulture wins if he keeps going strong.
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER AL PREVIEW (DETROIT-NY YANKEES) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
*Tigers-Yankees Preview* ========================
By SANTOSH VENKATARAMAN STATS Senior Writer
Detroit (88-74) at New York (95-67), 8:07 p.m. EDT
After finishing with baseball's first Triple Crown since 1967, Detroit Tigers slugger Miguel Cabrera is one of the favorites to win his first MVP.
Three-time league MVP Alex Rodriguez may not even be in the New York Yankees lineup anymore as the AL championship series begins.
Both clubs face short turnarounds for Saturday night's series opener at Yankee Stadium, with Cabrera and Rodriguez in the spotlight for far different reasons.
These teams advanced from grueling five-game division series thanks to two wins apiece from their respective aces, CC Sabathia of New York and reigning AL MVP and Cy Young Award winner Justin Verlander for Detroit.
Each pitcher went the distance to capture Game 5, with Verlander coming through in a 6-0 win at Oakland on Thursday and Sabathia in a 3-1 home victory Friday over Baltimore.
That rules out the aces for this weekend's two games in the Bronx, and the focus instead figures to be on the hitters - and Cabrera in particular.
Cabrera turned in a season for the ages with a .330 average, 44 homers and 139 RBIs. He went 5 for 20 with one RBI in the Oakland series, and is a .179 hitter in 11 postseason games against the Yankees.
The slugger, however, has hit safely in all 13 of his LCS games, batting .360 with six homers, 13 RBIs and 14 runs scored.
"He is just a great hitter," Yankees starter Andy Pettitte said. "Obviously he doesn't have a whole lot of holes. He's got power to the opposite field, and he's got obviously pull power. So when you have got a guy like that, he's tough to get out."
Pettitte (0-1, 3.86 ERA) will start Game 1 after giving up three runs over seven-plus innings in Monday's 3-2 loss to the Orioles. Cabrera is 4 for 12 with two homers against him in regular-season play to go along with eight hitless at-bats in the 2003 World Series with Florida.
Rodriguez, meanwhile, is in the news for his woes. The third baseman was benched for a playoff game Friday for the first time with New York, with manager Joe Girardi saying the star is "going through a difficult time."
The benching came after he was pinch-hit for in each of the previous two games against Baltimore. Raul Ibanez batted for Rodriguez and hit a tying homer in the ninth inning Wednesday before adding a game-winning blast in the 12th for a 3-2 victory.
Rodriguez is 2 for 16 with nine strikeouts in the postseason. He went 2 for 18 in last year's division series against Detroit, going 0 for 4 with three strikeouts in a 3-2 home loss in Game 5.
"I'm not happy and obviously disappointed," Rodriguez said before Friday's contest. "Want to be in there in the worst way."
The Tigers will start only right-handers in this series, beginning with Doug Fister (0-0, 2.57) on Saturday. That means Girardi could sit Rodriguez throughout, although the manager was non-committal after Friday's win.
Fister went 1-1 with a 6.52 ERA in two division series games against New York last year as he returns to the site where he prevailed in Game 5 by allowing one run over five innings. Rodriguez went 0 for 4 against him in that series to drop to 1 for 9 in his career.
The Tigers right-hander yielded two runs over seven innings Sunday and did not get a decision in a 5-4 home win over the A's.
New York has many other struggling hitters besides A-Rod. Robinson Cano is 2 for 22, Nick Swisher is 2 for 18 and former Tigers outfielder Curtis Granderson improved to 3 for 19 after homering in his two-hit performance Friday.
Detroit is appearing in the ALCS in consecutive years for the first time after falling to Texas last season. The Tigers won eight of 10 to close the regular season to overtake Chicago for the AL Central title before blowing a two-game lead against the A's and advancing thanks to Verlander.
"We don't want to be satisfied," general manager Dave Dombrowski said. "Now we're there. But we've been there before. Now we want that next step. We want eight more wins."
Cabrera was just 3 for 15 - albeit with five walks - in last year's division series, but now he's being protected by Prince Fielder, who is trying to improve a .192 career postseason average.
"Obviously you have Cabrera in there and Fielder, great hitters," Pettitte said. "Just hope you can get out there and make quality pitches."
The Yankees left-hander may be equally concerned about Delmon Young, who is 13 for 24 against him including postseason. Young had three solo homers in last year's division series.
Young will be playing his first games in New York since he was arrested there in April on a hate crime harassment charge following a fight at his hotel during which police say he yelled anti-Semitic epithets.
Pettitte is 2-1 with a 2.84 ERA in three postseason starts at the new Yankee Stadium, where he last pitched in the playoffs in the 2010 ALCS. He has never faced the Tigers there and hasn't pitched against them anywhere since 2008.
New York won six of 10 meetings in the regular season, with Granderson posting team highs of four homers and 12 RBIs. Cabrera and Fielder combined for eight homers and 18 RBIs.
Barring any weather problems, the Yankees will become the first team ever to host MLB postseason games on five straight days in Sunday's Game 2 after playing the final three at home against the Orioles.
|Last Updated: 9/23/2014 11:24:39 AM EST|