The New York Yankees are a game away from being eliminated in their American League Division Series against the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park
New York Yankees at Detroit Tigers
New York has a enough postseason experience to know what it means to be down 2-1 in a best-of-five series, as the team dropped a 5-4 contest in Game 3 at Comerica Park. “It’s definitely one game at a time now,” commented Yankees first baseman Derek Jeter. “We can’t be looking forward to anything else because if we don’t win, we go home.” Many on the roster know that the Tigers eliminated them in 2006, completing a series win at tonight’s venue. The club is 8-9 in ALDS road games since 2002, but seven of those wins have come in Minnesota. New York is 40-27 after a loss this season, but just 20-21 when playing a team with a winning record.
Yankees starting pitcher A.J. Burnett finished the regular season with an 11-11 record and 5.15 ERA in 33 games (32 starts), but the club managed to win his last three starts of the year. The right-hander is 4-5 with a 6.28 ERA in 15 road games (14 starts), as opponents are hitting .287 against him. In eight career starts versus the Tigers, Burnett is 4-2 with a 6.33 ERA, including an even 2-2 mark and 7.17 ERA at Comerica Park in four outings.
Detroit is right where it wants to be after winning last night’s game in front of 43,581 crazed fans, which have actually gained in enthusiasm due to the Lions success in the NFL. The Tigers coaching staff knows it’s never easy to eliminate a team with so much postseason experience. “Trust me, they’re not going to go away,” commented Tigers manager Jim Leyland. “We’ve put ourselves in decent position, but we’ve still got more to accomplish.” Much of the team’s early success in this series has been attributed to controlling the middle of the Yankees lineup, as Teixeira and Alex Rodriguez are a combined 1-for-21 in three games. Detroit is 66-47 versus right-handed starters this year.
Tigers starting pitcher Rick Porcello is 14-9 with a 4.75 ERA in 31 starts this season and led the club to consecutive home wins in two no-decision efforts to end the year. He allowed six runs and 14 hits over 13 innings over that span. The right-hander finished the year an even 5-5 with a 5.64 ERA in 14 home starts, as opponents hit .302 against him. In four career outings versus the Bronx Bombers, Porcello is 2-2 with a 5.56 ERA, issuing 11 walks and registering just eight strikeouts in 22 2/3 frames.
Bettors will likely back the Yankees due to their 73-34 record versus the AL Central, while the Tigers are 0-4 in their last four games as a home underdog.
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