For the first two games in the series against the Mariners the Yankees have not been able to effectively score off of Seattle’s relief pitching. Today the Yankees need to capitalize off of facing Jason Vargas, who is an inferior pitcher to Michael Pineda and Felix Hernandez, who pitched the first two games of the series.
The Yankees will be sending out their ace, CC Sebathia, who is 5-3 with a 3.17 ERA, and 1.27 WHIP. Vargas has a record of 3-2 with a 3.86 ERA, and a 1.29 WHIP. He had his worst start of the season, last Monday, when he allowed five runs to the Twins, while walking a season high four batters.
The last time that the Mariners swept the Yankees at home, they were playing in the Kingdome and Alex Rodriguez was their shortstop. To get the victory the Yankees will need their bats to have an offensive outburst, while not having any miscues from Eduardo Nunez in the field as well an improvement from Sebathia who allowed four runs in his last start. However, he pitched nine innings and kept the team in the game, which is all you can ask for.
Mariano Rivera lost the game for the Yankees last night in the 12th inning after a very productive 6 2/3 innings out of the rest of the bullpen. This is a very rare occurrence for Rivera and likely will not happen many more times this season. He was brought in during a non-save situation so that might have been part of the reason for allowing three hits.
However, the Yankees had five innings to score runs off of the bullpen so the fact that Rivera even had to enter the game is unacceptable. They left nine runners on base which is a number that needs to be cut down.
Hopefully Andruw Jones can spark the offense like he did last Wednesday when he slugged two home runs in the game against the Blue Jays. Another player who has been inserted into the lineup today is Francisco Cervelli, who is coming into the game one for his last nine so he is due for a few singles.
Sebathia is due for another vintage performance to help the Yankees win one game in Seattle, before they travel to Oakland. The Athletics are similar to the Mariners in that they are lead by their pitching. Oakland leads the league in team ERA so this game is very important.