Yankees feeling better about A.J.
Before Juan Miranda played the hero in the ninth inning and Kyle Farnsworth assumed the role of goat, Burnett gave the Yankees 6 1/3 innings of three-hit ball in mowing down the Royals, striking out eight but walking three and needing 108 pitches to get that far.
Joe Girardi lifted Burnett in the seventh, as much because of the pitch count as a precaution for the American League Division Series.
Burnett is definitely going to be one of the starters in the ALDS, no matter if they play the Tigers or Twins, though it will be interesting to see how they will decide to arrange him after a long meeting Tuesday to discuss the roster. This weekend could provide a hint, as the Yankees have lined up CC Sabathia, Andy Pettitte and Burnett to pitch against the Rays in St. Petersburg, Fla.
With Games 1 and 2 in the Bronx, the home-road splits — which Girardi said they would consider — seem to lean toward the idea of pitching Burnett in Game 2. Burnett is 5-3 with a 3.65 ERA at Yankee Stadium and 7-6 with a 4.73 ERA on the road. Pettitte is 6-4 with a 4.59 ERA at Yankee Stadium and 8-3 with a 3.59 ERA on the road.
Then consider that in, three career starts at Comerica Park, Burnett is 2-1 with a very disturbing 9.42 ERA. At the Metrodome, he is 2-1 with a much more palatable 3.91 ERA. Pettitte is 2-3 with a 4.65 ERA at Comerica Park, and 5-4 with a 3.62 ERA at the Metrodome.