Blue Jays-Yankees Preview

Toronto broke out at the plate to win its series opener against

the New York Yankees. The Blue Jays might have a tougher time

scoring against CC Sabathia.

The Yankee left-hander tries to win his fifth consecutive start

against the Blue Jays on Tuesday night in the Bronx.

Jose Bautista hit his 19th homer and catcher J.P. Arencibia

drove in four runs in Toronto’s 7-3 at New York on Monday.

After totaling 11 runs while dropping two of three at Yankee

Stadium earlier this season, the Blue Jays (24-23) used a five-run

sixth inning in Monday’s opener to help even the season series with

New York at three games apiece.

“We need to show teams that every person in this lineup is

capable of doing damage,” Bautista said.

The majors’ home run leader, Bautista has just four hits in his

last 18 at-bats, but three of them have left the park. He’s batting

.316 with three home runs and five RBIs against the Yankees this

season, but has yet to face Sabathia (4-3, 3.06 ERA), who has

dominated Bautista over the years.

Bautista is 0 for 11 with six strikeouts against Sabathia, who

is 4-0 with a 2.15 ERA versus the Blue Jays since last losing to

them while with Cleveland on Sept. 4, 2006.

After he gave up a season-high six runs in 6 2-3 innings of a

6-0 loss to Boston on May 14, Sabathia bounced back to strike out

nine and not walk a batter for the first time this season in eight

scoreless innings of a 13-2 win at Baltimore on Thursday.

“I try to do my part, and these guys swing the bat,” Sabathia

said. “We’ve got a great lineup. It’s happening all year.”

The Yankees (25-21) did not live up to Sabathia’s praise in this

series opener, recording just six hits.

Robinson Cano drove in three runs and Alex Rodriguez went 2 for

4 as New York lost for the second time in seven games after

dropping a season-high six in a row.

New York could be in for another rough night at the plate

against scheduled starter Ricky Romero (4-4, 3.10), who will try to

win his third straight start overall and at Yankee Stadium.

Romero allowed six runs in 3 1-3 innings of a 9-0 loss to

Detroit on May 7, but has yielded one run and seven hits his last

two outings. After going 8 2-3 innings in a 2-0 win at Minnesota on

May 13, the left-hander gave up a solo homer and two other hits in

seven innings of a 3-2 win over Tampa Bay on Thursday.

“He’s a tough pitcher,” Tampa Bay’s Johnny Damon said.

Romero has been tough to beat in the Bronx of late, posting a

2.40 ERA while winning his last two starts there. He allowed two

runs and struck out seven in six innings of a 5-3 win at Yankee

Stadium on April 29 to snap a personal three-game skid overall.

Rodriguez has hit .484 with three homers and four RBIs his last

seven games, but .211 (4 for 19) with five strikeouts versus

Romero.