Duck and Cover…those two thoughts come to mind when thinking about Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau hitting against Sergio Mitre. Truth be told, that’s pretty much been the way all Yankee pitchers have been treated by Minnesota’s version of the M&M boys. Since the start of last season, Mauer and Morneau both have an OPS of 1.2 against the Yankees, which makes the Twins recent lack of success against the Bronx Bombers all the more amazing.
Unfortunately for the Yankees, Mitre’s second start of the season was necessitated by the Tuesday night rainout in Detroit. Frequently labeled as unlucky because his FIP has historically been much lower than his ERA (which stands at 5.50 for his career), Mitre has never had anything close to resembling success. Yet, the Yankees have still seen fit to entrust him with the role of spot starter, leading to their predicament this afternoon.
If Mitre’s presence on the mound isn’t enough to buoy the Twins spirits, then the Yankees depleted lineup might do the trick. With Jeter as DH and Nick Swisher unable to swing left handed, the bottom three in the lineup should provide a nice landing spot for Twins starter Nick Blackburn. In addition to a compromised offense, having Thames make his first start in RF also significantly downgrades the defense. In other words, if the Twins can’t beat the Yankees this afternoon, perhaps they never will.
Of course, it won’t really be that easy. The middle of the Yankees lineup has started to turn on the power and Blackburn has never had success against the Yankees (0-1 with a 5.89 ERA in four career starts). What’s more, Derek Jeter has enjoyed facing Blackburn in the past, so this might be the perfect day for him to break through one of the longest slumps of his career. If the big boppers come through and Mitre can somehow dance his way through 5 solid innings, the Yankees could still come away with the sweep.
|vs. Nick Blackburn||PA||BA||OBP||SLG||HR||RBI|
|Derek Jeter DH||12||0.429||0.636||0.857||1||3|
|Brett Gardner CF||4||0.250||0.250||0.250||0||0|
|Mark Teixeira 1B||7||1.000||1.000||1.667||1||5|
|Alex Rodriguez 3B||9||0.333||0.333||0.667||1||3|
|Robinson Cano 2B||8||0.000||0.000||0.000||0||0|
|Jorge Posada C||0||0.000||0.000||0.000||0||0|
|Marcus Thames RF||7||0.000||0.000||0.000||0||0|
|Randy Winn LF||0||0.000||0.000||0.000||0||0|
|Ramiro Pena SS||0||0.000||0.000||0.000||0||0|
|vs. Sergio Mitre||PA||BA||OBP||SLG||HR||RBI|
|Denard Span CF||0||0.000||0.000||0.000||0||0|
|Orlando Hudson 2B||9||0.333||0.333||0.667||1||1|
|Joe Mauer C||0||0.000||0.000||0.000||0||0|
|Justin Morneau 1B||0||0.000||0.000||0.000||0||0|
|Michael Cuddyer RF||0||0.000||0.000||0.000||0||0|
|Jim Thome DH||4||0.750||0.750||1.000||0||2|
|Jason Kubel LF||0||0.000||0.000||0.000||0||0|
|Alexi Casilla SS||0||0.000||0.000||0.000||0||0|
|Matt Tolbert 3B||0||0.000||0.000||0.000||0||0|
|Yankees vs. Twins|
|Season: 2010||Season: 2009||Season: 2008||All-Time|
|NYY: 2-0||NYY: 7-0||NYY: 6-4||NYY: 1103-764|