W2W4: Yankees vs. Rays (June 7)
June, 7, 2012
By Mark Simon | ESPNNewYork.com
David Price Stats To Watch
Since allowing five runs in seven innings to the Yankees on May 10, David Price has allowed five total earned runs in his past four starts against the Blue Jays, Braves, Red Sox and Orioles.
Though the Yankees touched him up for two home runs (by Curtis Granderson and Robinson Cano), Price has done well at limiting damage when he yields hits. He’s allowed only two home runs in these past four starts and did not allow an extra-base hit to a left-handed hitter.
It will be interesting to see if Price changes his approach in pitching to Yankees hitters. They only missed on four of their 45 swings against him in that last meeting. Since then, Price has gotten a miss at a rate of once for about every 4.5 swings.
CC Sabathia Stats To Watch
Andy Pettitte got five strikeouts with a nasty breaking slider in the series opener on Monday. We’ll see if CC Sabathia can get the Rays to chase with the success that Pettitte had.
After struggling at times with the slider in starts against the Reds and Athletics, Sabathia had the Tigers fishing at the pitch in his last start, netting four strikeouts with it.
Sabathia recorded a season-high 10 strikeouts in beating Price for the first time on May 10.
The Rays have had their issues against left-handed pitching recently. In the last 10 days, opponents have started a lefty five times, and the Rays are 1-4 in those games. The combo of Chris Sale, Brian Matusz and Pettitte held them to two runs and seven hits over 22 innings.
Two Rays you probably won’t see in the lineup tonight are Jose Molina (0-for-16 vs. Sabathia) and Hideki Matsui (0-for-15 vs. Sabathia).
The hitter who has given Sabathia the most trouble is Sean Rodriguez, who has reached base seven times in his last 10 plate appearances against Sabathia, including once via intentional walk.
Derek Jeter is 0-for-9 in the past two games. He hasn’t had three straight hitless games in which he’s had at least one at-bat since 2010.
Andruw Jones has started each of the prior two times the Yankees have faced Price this season, and he’s had an RBI hit in each. In fact, dating back to 2010, each of Jones' past four hits against Price have driven in a run. Jones is timely, though not necessarily effective. He’s 6-for-27 against Price for his career.