Yankees-Tigers: Johnny Damon Returns to Yankee Stadium

August 16, 2010   ·     ·   Jump to comments
Article Source: Bleacher Report - New York Yankees

After a disappointing 3-3 road trip, splitting with Texas and Kansas City, the Yankees return to Yankee Stadium to face Johnny Damon and the Detroit Tigers.

But don’t forget about Austin Jackson, the young rookie who the Yankees traded to acquire Curtis Granderson. He is also making a “reappearance.”

The Yankees were especially sloppy in the final game against Kansas City, committing three errors in the game. As Joe Girardi put it, that is a game they have to win.

Today is the first game of a four-game series. It’s Max Scherzer (7-9, 4.03 ERA) vs. Javier Vazquez (9-8, 4.90 ERA) at 7:05 pm ET in Yankee Stadium.

Vazquez is looking to rebound from a subpar start against Texas, only going 4.1 innings and allowing six runs. The big story with Vazquez is his lack of velocity of late.

Calling it a “dead arm,” the Yankees are hoping Vazquez can right the ship against Detroit. In 14 career starts against Detroit, Vazquez is 6-8 with a 4.36 ERA.

Former Yankees World Series hero Johnny Damon, in 24 at-bats, is hitting .333 with two home runs, two walks, and five RBI against Vazquez. Damon also has five K’s against the Yankees right-hander.

In Damon’s career, he is hitting .275 with 10 home runs and 56 RBI in 552 at-bats against his former team.

Max Scherzer, Detroit’s starting pitcher, has thrown very well lately, only giving up two earned runs or fewer in his last three starts.

This is the Yankees’ first look at Scherzer. This could mean trouble for the Yankees, since another big story with this year’s team is that they do poorly against pitchers they have never seen.

Some Yankees have had at-bats against Scherzer, but the numbers are not that great, and it is a small sample, so one may interpret the numbers however they please.

Personally, I will not judge, but here they are just in case some are curious:

  • Curtis Granderson has the best numbers against Scherzer. In only three at-bats, he is hitting .333 with one hit and one strikeout. Again, a very small sample, but compared to the other Yankees who have seen Scherzer, these numbers are great.
  • Mark Teixeira has only had one at-bat and no hits against Scherzer.
  • Lance Berkman has seen Scherzer from his days with Houston while Scherzer was in Arizona. Berkman, in six at-bats, is hitting only .167 with two RBI but has strikeouts. Berkman is currently listed as day-to-day, so it is unsure if he will be in the lineup tonight.
  • Austin Kearns is also hitting .167 with one hit in six at-bats. He has fanned twice against Detroit’s young right-hander.

Perhaps, today the Yankees can right the wrong that is their record against starters they have never seen before. Hopefully the small samples against Scherzer will help the Yankees in the game tonight.


Steve Henn is the author of the Yankees Blog The Experience. Follow him on Twitter @steve_henn.

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