August 10, 2010

Yankees-Rangers series preview

The Yankees are back on the road this week, starting with a short series in Texas and ending with a long series in Kansas City.

The Rangers aren’t playing their best baseball, but are still a force to be reckoned with. Led by the MLB batting leader, Josh Hamilton, the Rangers hold the third best record in the league and have a stranglehold on the AL West.

Despite a recent slide against quality teams, the Yankees are still atop every set of power rankings you’ll find and lead the AL East by 1.5 games with the best record in baseball.

Head to Head:
Back in April, the Yankees swept the Rangers at Yankee Stadium. That was the only time these teams have met this year, and after these two games, the Yankees visit Texas again next month.

Pitching Matchups:

Date: Yankees starters Rangers starters
Tues., 8:05 p.m. A.J. Burnett (9-9, 4.93) C.J. Wilson (10-5, 3.30)
Wed., 8:05 p.m. Javier Vazquez (9-8, 4.63) Cliff Lee (2-2, 2.63)

Lineup Note
: The Yankees most likely will play without Mark Teixeira this series, as he’s home with his pregnant wife whose expecting a child.

Players to Watch:
Yankees: Derek Jeter
. He’s the Yankees’ hottest hitter by far in August with a .344/.417/.438 line. He’s also hit quite a few of his homers against Texas over the years.

Rangers: David Murphy. He’s off to a good start in August and most of his power numbers come off righties. He’ll face two in his next two games.

The Yankees aren’t just facing two lefties; they’re facing two great lefties. Wilson is having a breakout year as a starter and Lee is, well, regular old Lee. I’ll be happy with another split.

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