American League Preview from The Sports Network|
Saturday, September 29th
(All times eastern)
New York Yankees (91-66) at Toronto Blue Jays (69-88), 1:07 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: New York - Andy Pettitte (5-3, 2.71)
Toronto - Ricky Romero (9-14, 5.76)
(Sports Network) - Andy Pettitte goes after his third straight win since
returning from the disabled list on Saturday when the New York Yankees try to
move one step closer to a postseason spot against the Toronto Blue Jays at
New York maintained its one-game lead in the American League East on Friday,
as Russell Martin blasted a three-run homer in the Yankees' 11-4 rout of the
Nick Swisher stroked a two-run double in the opening frame and Eric Chavez
book-ended the victory with a two-run home run in the ninth inning.
The Yankees, though, failed to gain any ground on Baltimore in the division,
as the Orioles fired a one-hitter in a 9-1 home win over the Boston Red Sox on
Hiroki Kuroda (15-11) labored through 5 1/3 innings by giving up a season-high
tying 10 hits along with two runs.
"Our defense kind of picked him up a little bit the first two innings,"
Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "You look up, they have three doubles, five
hits total, a walk and don't score a run in two innings."
Chad Jenkins (0-3) remained without a victory after 12 major league
appearances. In his second start, the right-hander gave up four hits and three
runs over 3 2/3 innings.
Rajai Davis went 4-for-4 for the Blue Jays, who failed to build on a 6-0 win
in the opener of this four-game series. Colby Rasmus and Adam Lind homered in
Pettitte, meanwhile, has been magnificent after a nearly three-month layoff
and has yet to allow a run in 11 innings since returning. Against the
Minnesota Twins on Monday the veteran left-hander scattered seven hits over
six scoreless innings to improve to 5-3, while lowering his ERA to 2.71.
"There's nothing that fazes him," said Swisher. "He comes back (from
retirement), breaks his foot on a crazy play, has been itching to get back in
the (rotation) for a long time, and once he does, he delivers -- every single
time. You can only just look at that and be like, 'Man, I want to be like
Pettitte, who is on track to start a potential one-game wild card matchup for
the Yanks, beat the Jays in his first start back and limited them to four hits
over five innings without giving up a run. He is 22-12 lifetime versus them
with a 4.09 ERA in 43 games (42 starts).
It's been a forgettable year for Toronto lefty Ricky Romero, who won for the
first time in 16 starts his last time out. Romero had been 0-13 in his
previous 15 trips to the hill before beating Baltimore on Monday.
"It feels good; it wasn't pretty from my side, but I battled out of some
jams," said Romero, who allowed four runs in five innings en route to his
first win since June 22.
An All-Star last season, Romero is just 9-14 with a 5.76 ERA this season.
He lost to the Yankees three times in his drought and is a mere 3-7 against
them with a 4.76 ERA in 14 starts.
New York has won 10 of 16 from the Jays this season.
09/29 10:27:42 ET