Yankees-Orioles preview

BY foxsports • September 3, 2016

BALTIMORE -- Veteran left-hander CC Sabathia has had a distinguished career since signing with to the New York Yankees in 2009.

Several members of the Baltimore Orioles have enjoyed success against Sabathia in many American League East battles.

And Baltimore's veterans have a large sample size against Sabathia, who enters Saturday's start at Camden Yards with a record of 8-11 and a 4.31 ERA this season.

Third baseman Manny Machado has 40 at-bats against Sabathia and is hitting .325.

Shortstop J.J. Hardy has an average of .343 in 35 at-bats against the New York lefty while center fielder Adam Jones, who has missed several games with a hamstring issue, has an average of .235 with two homers in 34 at-bats against Sabathia over the past five years.

Chris Davis is batting .188 with one homer in 32 at-bats against Sabathia. Steve Pearce, acquired recently from the Tampa Bay Rays, is hitting .333 in 18 at-bats while Nolan Reimold, another right-handed batter, is hitting .286 in 21 at-bats against Sabathia and homered off him in the sixth inning Sunday in New York.

The New York starter is 19-9 with a 3.35 ERA in his career against the Orioles, with a mark of 11-6, 3.51 at Baltimore. He is 14-9 with the Yankees against the Birds in his career. He is one of 10 pitchers in the modern era to make 200 starts with two different clubs and he is the active MLB leader in strikeouts (2,699) and complete games (38).

Sabathia allowed three runs and six hits in 6 2/3 innings against the Orioles on Sunday in New York but was saddled with the 5-0 loss. He fanned eight in that game and exited with a 1-0 lead before Adam Warren allowed a two-run single to Pearce in the seventh.

The Yankees will need some innings from the Sabathia Chad Green left after 1 2/3 innings due to right elbow pain in Friday's 8-0 loss.

"It was just something I didn't feel was right so I thought I should say something. Hopefully it's nothing too serious, but we'll see tomorrow," Green said. "I don't know when it actually happened, but at some point in the inning I just couldn't...breaking ball didn't feel right coming out of my hand. Fastball didn't feel right."

Green gave up four runs in 1 2/3 innings as the Yankees had getting just two hits off Dylan Bundy and two relievers.

"Tomorrow's game is really important," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said

Added Yankees outfielder Brett Gardner: "Tomorrow's obviously a very important game. It's a very important series this weekend against the Orioles and today obviously didn't go our way."

The Yankees are 3 1/2 games out of the second wild card spot and have gone scoreless in their last 18 innings against the Orioles after scoring 27 times in the first two games last weekend at Yankee Stadium.

Are the Yankees in danger of falling out of the post-season hunt?

Kevin Gausman is responsible for keeping the Yankees off the scoreboard and starts Saturday. He improved to 6-10 with a 3.73 ERA when he pitched seven effective innings in Baltimore's 5-0 win in New York.

"That was probably as good as I've seen him," Baltimore manager Buck Showalter said.

Jacoby Ellsbury is hitting .160 in 25 at-bats against Gausman. Gardner is hitting .318 in 22 at-bats against the right-hander while Brian McCann is hitting .182 in 22 at-bats while Chase Headley is at .273 in 11 trips to the plate.

Lost in the four homers hit by the Orioles on Friday and the shutout pitching of starter Dylan Bundy and the bullpen was the infield defense.

?? Manny Machado made a fine diving catch and a nice throw to retire a runner as first baseman Chris Davis made a nice pick in the dirt.

Second baseman Jonathan Schoop went up the middle to rob Starlin Castro of a hit in the second with a strong throw to Davis.

"Jonathan made a great play up the middle," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "Chris Davis had a short hop."

If Gausman can let his fielders do the work Saturday and the Orioles continue to hit homers at historic levels the Yankees could be hard pressed to stay in the playoff hunt even with veteran Sabathia on the mound.

The Orioles are three games games back of the first-place Blue Jays and are now 3 1/2 games ahead of the fourth-place Yankees.



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