It is a familiar theme this season: New York Yankee pitching finds itself in a tight spot. Last week saw the highly regrettable situation of Moose and Pavano moving to the DL to join four other injured Yankee hurlers, and a very good outing by Pettitte was tossed aside by the unpossible two-out, 0-2 three-run shot by Marco Scutaro off of Rivera at the close of the road trip. The perforated rotation led the Yankees to call upon the services of 24-year-old (Sebern) Chase Wright of Wichita Falls, Texas from AA Trenton. The 6’2" 205 pound lefty threw 14 innings for the Thunder this year, allowing no runs while striking out 19 and giving up a solitary walk along with four hits. Wright was 12-3 for Class A Tampa in 2006, sporting a trim 1.88 ERA across his 119 2/3 innings. The Yankees (5-6) send his Wright stuff against Cleveland’s (6-3) Jake Westbrook, who was roughed up in outings against Anaheim and the White Sox.
Unfortunately, the offense is currently in a tight spot as well. Álex Rodriguez is dominating or near the top of every major offensive category in the game. ARod has 18 RBIs; no other Yankee has more than eight. Giambi’s two home runs are good enough for second place on the team behind ARod’s MLB-leading seven dingers. Yes, ARod is playing in the stratosphere right now, but the only two other Yankees that have slugging percentages north of .400 are Posada (.512) and Damon (.484), who are the only batters in the lineup (save ARod) currently hitting above (or near) their career mark.
Grady Sizemore is hitting .323 with four home runs and six RBIS in only nine games to lead the Tribe’s offense. This turn of the wheel will see the Yankees miss Tribe ace and AL wins leader C. C. Sabathia in the three game set against Cleveland starting at Yankee Stadium today. Kei Igawa will face Tribe ERA leader Jeremy Sowers Wednesday, with Darrell Rasner facing Fausto Carmona Thursday. Karstens got some work in Tampa; hopefully he will be in shape to come back and contribute shortly. Comment away.