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Wednesday, October 20, 2010
ALCS Game 5 Preview: Rangers at Yankees


A quick preview of Game 5 of the American League Championship Series between the Texas Rangers and the New York Yankees.

• The Yankees have lost their last five postseason Game 5s dating to the 2003 World Series (had won previous five Game 5s).

FROM ELIAS SPORTS BUREAU: The Yankees have lost five of their last six, and six of their last eight postseason day games.

CC Sabathia
Sabathia
• The Yankees have lost two straight postseason home games to the same team. The last time they lost three straight postseason home games to the same team in the same postseason was in the 1942 World Series, when after a 1-1 split in St. Louis, they lost three straight at home to the Cardinals.

• CC Sabathia is making his first start at home in this postseason. During the regular season he was 11-2 with a 3.00 in 16 home starts; but he was 0-2 with a 9.26 ERA (12 ER/11⅔ IP) in his last two starts, after going 11-0 with a 2.27 ERA in his first 14 home starts.

• C.J. Wilson is making his second road start of the postseason. He pitched 6& #8531; scoreless innings and earned the win in Game 2 of the ALDS at Tampa Bay. Wilson had a 2.91 road ERA during the regular season, the 4th-best among qualifying AL pitchers (minimum 81 innings pitched on road).

C.J. Wilson
Wilson
• Despite pitching seven innings and allowing just three earned runs in Game 1 of the ALCS vs the Yankees, Wilson got a no-decision and remains winless against the Yankees in his career. Including the postseason, he is 0-3 with a 4.08 ERA in 21 appearances. In four regular season and postseason starts combined against the Yankees (all in 2010), he is 0-1 with a 5.06 ERA.

• The Yankees are 8-3 in the last two postseasons vs left-handed starters, but all three losses have come when facing Cliff Lee (2010 ALCS Game 3, 2009 World Series Game 1 and 5).

• Fieldin Culbreth will be the home plate umpire in Game 5, and both starting pitchers have had success with Culbreth behind the plate. Wilson has pitched three times (no starts) with Culbreth calling balls and strikes, allowing no earned runs, striking out four and walking none. Sabathia has made four starts, and is 3-0 with a 1.20 ERA, and 27 strikeouts against seven walks.

• Our friends at AccuScore report, after running computer simulations, that the Yankees have the following chances of winning in this series:

Game 5: 54 percent
Game 6: 38 percent
Game 7: 33 percent

Their chances of winning the next two games sit at 20.5 percent, and their chances of winning Games 5 thru 7 are just 6.8 percent.