Phil Hughes Stats To Watch
The last time Hughes faced the Red Sox, he caught them by surprise with his changeup, which netted him seven outs and no baserunners on 29 pitches on Aug. 17.
He’s thrown the pitch more sparingly since then. The last 26 he’s thrown over his last two starts have gotten him two outs, but resulted in three base hits.
The challenging matchup for Hughes could be Jacoby Ellsbury, who has reached base nine times in 17 plate appearances against him. That includes four walks, all of which have come on 3-2 pitches.
Hughes has not pitched well in any of his last three starts at Fenway Park. In them, he’s allowed 17 runs and 25 hits in 13 innings pitched.
Felix Doubront Stats To Watch
Doubront seems to be gassed at season’s end. He’s allowed 23 runs in 21 1/3 innings in his last five starts, with a 9.70 ERA, a .351 opponents’ batting average and 1.012 opponents’ OPS.
With another start of five innings or fewer, allowing four runs or more, Doubront will have the longest single-season streak of such starts by a Red Sox pitcher since 1920. He currently shares that distinction with Joe Hesketh (1994) and Vaughn Eshelman (1995).
However, Doubront has made two good starts against the Yankees this season, allowing one run in six innings on April 21 and one run in 6 1/3 innings on July 29, sandwiched around a July 7 start in which he allowed four runs in 6 1/3 innings.
The Yankee whom he’s given the most trouble is Robinson Cano.
Cano is 0-for-10 with four strikeouts in 11 career plate appearances against Doubront.
Doubront hasn’t hesitated to keep Cano off the plate. Of the 39 pitches he’s thrown to Cano, eight have been on the inner-third of the plate, and another dozen have missed the strike zone, but run inside.
Each of the four times Cano has struck out, it’s come in the pitch immediately following one of those 20 inside pitches.
Derek Jeter's hot streak
It's understandable why Derek Jeter would want to stay in the Yankees lineup. He's 17-for-37 in his last eight games, with a 27 percent line-drive rate.
Jeter is totally locked in against fastballs at the moment-- his last 61 swings against them have resulted in 15 hits. He typically nets hits at a rate of about one for every six swings at heaters.
Jeter needs one hit to catch Willie Mays on the all-time hit list. He currently has 3,282 career hits.
Has the good Granderson returned?
This game will be a good test for Curtis Granderson, who is 5-for-11 with three home runs in his last three games. He's 1-for-15 against left-handed pitching this month.
Happy times at Fenway
The Yankees have six wins at Fenway Park this season. Only once in the last 26 seasons have the Yankees won more games than that in the regular season. They won seven games there in 2006.