The Yankees blew plenty of chances to score last night, and Joe Girardi had a meltdown before being tossed by the home plate umpire. The Yankees tied the game 3-3 in the top of the ninth, but the Tigers won in the bottom of the ninth on a sacrifice fly. Miguel Cabrera blasted two home runs to lead the Tigers to the win. The Yankees took the first game of this series on Friday night. Who will take the rubber match of this series? TBS will televise this game nationally.
New York’s offense has been quite a bit better over the last couple weeks. Mark Teixeira is finally hitting the ball like you would expect. Derek Jeter continues to lead the team with an impressive .335 average. Curtis Granderson has 17 long balls to lead the team in that category. The Yankees lead the majors in homers at 78, but the team is just eighth in the majors in runs scored per contest.
Phil Hughes has had a very forgettable season thus far in 2012. Hughes is 4-5 with a 5.64 ERA. He allowed 11 hits and seven earned runs in just 5 and 1/3 innings in his last start. Hughes was great a couple years ago, but he has struggled to regain that form in 2011 or 2012. The Yankees really need him to turn it around.
Justin Verlander will be on the hill for the Tigers. At this point, there isn’t a better pitcher in baseball than Verlander. He is the type of guy who has a chance to throw a no-hitter almost every time he goes out there because of the amazing stuff he has. Verlander had his worst outing of the year last time out against the Red Sox. Expect him to turn it around in this one. Verlander has a 2.55 ERA so far this season.
Detroit’s lineup isn’t what it was expected to be. The Tigers really miss Austin Jackson, who is out with an injury. In addition, Victor Martinez is a major weapon the team is missing. Besides the guys who are injured, Brennan Boesch and Jhonny Peralta are both having very disappointing seasons in 2012. Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder have both been brilliant in the middle of the order, but they aren’t getting much support from the rest of the lineup.
Free MLB Pick: Under 8
Verlander is due to bounce back after a poor start, and the Tigers offense is scuffling right now. I don’t see a ton of value on anything in this one, but I lean toward the under here.