Thursday, October 7, 2010
ALDS Game 2 Preview: Yankees at Twins
A quick look at Game 2 of the ALDS between the New York Yankees and Minnesota Twins.
• The Twins lost their 10th consecutive postseason game in their ALDS opening game with the Yankees. Seven of the 10 straight losses have been at the hands of the Yankees who swept them in the 2009 ALDS and won the last 3 games of the 2004 ALDS.
• Mariano Rivera extended his major league record with 40th career postseason save, and it's his 31st save that lasted longer than one inning.
• In his three starts since returning from the disabled list, Andy Pettitte allowed 10 ER over 13 1/3 IP (6.75 ERA). However, Pettitte had a .277 BABIP (batting average on balls in play) before hitting the DL and .429 in his three starts since. Pettitte's miss pct before and after the DL trip stayed relatively the same (18.5 pct vs 17.1 pct), an indicator that his stuff has not worsened.
• A key part of Carl Pavano's success this year has been his ability to get groundballs: he increased his groundball percentage from 44.6 pct in 2009 to 51.9 pct in 2010. The difference for Pavano was keeping the ball down in the zone: 39.4 pct of pitches low in 2009, up to 45.9 pct in 2010. Opponents hit the ball on the ground 61.0 pct of the time against Pavano's low pitches this season. Almost two-thirds (66.1 pct) of Pavano's offspeed pitches are low, generating groundballs on 69.0 pct of balls in play.
• Veteran umpire Hunter Wendelstedt will be behind the plate in Game 2 and both starting pitchers have very similar numbers with Wendelstedt calling balls and strikes. Both pitchers have made four starts with Wendelstedt behind the plate, and they are both 1-2. Pettitte has a 4.38 ERA, 18 K and 14 BB in just over six innings per start, while Pavano has a 3.91 ERA, 15 K and 10 BB in just under six inning per start.