Yankees-Tigers Preview

With their All-Star second baseman out of commission, the New

York Yankees needed a ninth-inning rally to earn a third straight

win.

Robinson Cano hopes to return to the lineup as the Yankees try

for a season-best fourth consecutive victory Tuesday night at the

slumping Detroit Tigers.

Cano, who had played every inning of every game before leaving

Sunday’s 5-2 win over Toronto with a bone bruise on his left hand,

was held out of Monday’s 5-3 series-opening victory at Detroit

(12-17).

New York (17-9) plated three runs in the first two innings

Monday but went 2 for 14 with runners in scoring position and

failed to score again until the ninth. The Yankees surely could

have used the help of Cano, who has four homers and seven RBIs

during a six-game hitting streak.

“It might feel better (Tuesday),” manager Joe Girardi told the

Yankees’ official website. “You might see him in there

(Tuesday).”

Cano has experienced similar success recently against the

Tigers, with four home runs and seven RBIs in his last six games

versus Detroit.

Yankees probable starter CC Sabathia (2-1, 2.25 ERA), meanwhile,

has struggled in Detroit of late. The left-hander, who went 7-1

with a 3.09 ERA over his first 10 career road starts against the

Tigers, is 0-3 with an 8.50 ERA in his three most recent outings at

Comerica Park.

Sabathia, though, will be looking to win his third consecutive

start overall. He held the Chicago White Sox to three unearned runs

and seven hits in seven innings of Thursday’s 12-3 victory.

“I don’t think he shook me off once,” Yankees catcher Russell

Martin said. “He’s the type of guy who, even if he does get behind

in counts, can throw all of his pitches at any time. That helps

him. He doesn’t have to rely on his fastball to get outs.”

Tigers slugger Miguel Cabrera, who went 3 for 4 with an RBI on

Monday to increase his team-leading average to .350, is 8 for 14

with two homers off Sabathia.

Catcher Alex Avila homered twice to help Detroit tie Monday’s

game, but Jose Valverde allowed two runs in the ninth to send the

Tigers to their seventh consecutive loss. The Tigers haven’t

dropped eight straight since Sept. 16-23, 2005.

“That’s the problem when you have lost seven games in a row –

you don’t get much work for your closer,” manager Jim Leyland

said.

After giving up one hit in a 9-0 win over the White Sox on April

23, Detroit starter Brad Penny (1-3, 6.11) struggled Thursday ,

surrendering four runs and nine hits in seven innings of a 7-2 loss

to Seattle. He has allowed at least four runs in four of his six

outings.

The right-hander allowed a season-worst eight runs in 4 1-3

innings during a 10-6 loss at Yankee Stadium on April 2.

Cano is 3 for 8 lifetime against Penny, while Alex Rodriguez and

Derek Jeter have combined for 10 hits in 21 at-bats.