9/18 – Yankees at Mariners
Getting ready for baseball here at Safeco Field, where A.J. Burnett will be trying to reverse his recent skid that has seen him go 1-5 with a 6.14 ERA since the beginning of August.
At the root of his problems have been an inability to avoid the big inning, and this is a very good test – facing a guy in Felix Hernandez who traditionally is not about to give up a lot of runs.
As Joe Girardi said, it’s not like they can expect to win this game 10-8 tonight. But they certainly would like to win it, no matter the score.
“It would be a nice way to start the road trip,” Girardi said.
Interesting topics pre-game as Girardi said that the Yankees might just celebrate a little when they clinch a playoff spot – the magic number for that is four. The big celebration will be for the American League East, which has a magic number of 10 coming into play tonight.
There has been some discussion about which AL Division Series the Yankees would prefer to play, and the effectiveness of Burnett and Joba Chamberlain comes into that.
Girardi said that you can probably figure out “22 or 23″ of the guys on the playoff roster and the rest will have to be hammered out based on the ALDS schedule and – of course – the opponent. We’ve all got hotels booked in both Detroit and Minneapolis for the ALDS. Never can be too careful.
Brian Bruney has switched to No. 99 because he “never much cared for 38,” according to Jason Zillo. According to YankeeNumbers.com, Bruney will become just the second Yankee to wear No. 99. Charlie Keller did it for part of the 1952 season. Naturally it is the highest number ever worn in Major League Baseball.
Here are the lineups:
|Pitching: RHP A.J. Burnett (11-9, 4.33).|
Griffey Jr. DH
|Pitching: RHP Felix Hernandez (15-5, 2.52).|
Update from Arlington — the Angels have beaten the Rangers, 2-0. The magic number for the Yankees to celebrate clinching a playoff spot is now 3.