Friday, April 11, 2008

Yankees - Red Sox Preview

For the first time in the 2008 regular season, the Yankees and the Red Sox are set to play. The game will take place at 7:05 ET at Fenway park where it is currently overcast. Both teams are 5-5 and have had their ups and downs early on.

Here's the Yankees lineup for tonight:

Melky Cabrera, CF
Robinson Cano, 2B
Bobby Abreu, RF
Alex Rodriguez, 3B
Hideki Matsui, LF
Jorge Posada, DH
Jason Giambi, 1B
Jose Molina, C
Alberto Gonzalez, SS

Joe Girardi is mixing things up once again. Melky Cabrera is moving up to the leadoff position. Abreu is back in right and Matsui is back in left. Jeter will likely be out for the whole series and Alberto Gonzalez will continue to fill in. I like Posada in the DH slot. Giambi is back in at first and Ensberg is back on the bench.

The Red Sox lineup looks like this:

Coco Crisp, CF
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
David Ortiz, DH
Manny Ramirez, LF
Kevin Youkilis, 3B
J.D. Drew, RF
Jason Varitek, C
Sean Casey, 1B
Julio Lugo, SS

Third baseman Mike Lowell is on the 15 day DL. Sean Casey moves in at first and Youkilis shifts to third.

Chien Ming Wang gets the start vs. Clay Buchholz. Buchholz threw a no-hitter last year but had some problems in his first start this year. Wang has showed he is the Yankees ace in his first two starts. The Yankees have the advantage in starting pitching tonight and if Wang can get 7 innings the Bronx Bombers will be in good shape.

Chamberlain and Rivera worked last night's game and so that leaves Bruney, Traber, Ohlendorf, Hawkins and Farnsworth. Hawkins and Farnsworth are huge liabilities. It will be interesting to see what happens and who Girardi goes to if the game is close.

The Red Sox used Delcarmen, Okajima, Tavarez and Papelbon last night, leaving Aardsma and Corey with fresh arms.

The pitching advantage right now goes to NY with Wang at the top of his game and the Yankees having more options in the bullpen  (unless Hawkins or Farnsworth comes in). Boston has been hitting well but the Yankees started coming to life offensively last night. I give the Yanks the nod for game 1.

Tomorrow's game should have Mussina pitching against Beckett. Mussina looked better in his last outing than Beckett, but Josh is Boston's ace. If he's got his stuff back Beckett should get the win, but Moose can still throw some dominating games. The final game of the series features Phil "the Franchise" Hughes against Daisuke "Dice-K" Matsuzaka. Dice-K has been pitching better than Hughes but both of these guys are unpredictable. This one will come down to bullpen pitching and I give the Yanks the edge here.

It should be a great series!

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