Hiroki Kuroda takes the mound today against the 30-32 Kansas City Royals. Kuroda has turned it around his last 4 starts, giving up no more than 3 runs per start, which resulted in 2 wins. Coming off of his season’s best 6 2/3 inning, 1 ER outing against the Oakland Athletics, Kuroda will try to continue his recent success against a team he has had pretty good numbers facing. The right-hander has a respectable 3.68 ERA when facing the Royals in three career starts.
The Yankees will be facing tough right-hander James Shields. Shields has plenty of experience pitching against the Yankees, as he has faced them more times than any other opponent. He is 8-15 with a 4.34 ERA against the Bombers in 29 career starts. One Yankees’ player has seen Shields more than any other, and that is Derek Jeter, he is a .294 hitter against him, so that will be an exciting match-up to watch as the day progresses. Another interesting side note, is that Shields’ career BAA vs. the Yankees, is also a .294 clip.
Mark Teixeria has struggled a great deal against Shields going 6-for-48 with 15 strikeouts. He has only been hitting .180 his last 15 games, it could continue to be a long series for him.
-Carlos Beltran‘s elbow: Beltran has been bothered by his ailing elbow and has been relegated to DH duty. He has not shown much in his return from the DL, so look for a breakout performance soon.
-KEEP AWAY FROM ALEX GORDON: Gordon is 6-for-8 against Kuroda in his career, and it doesn’t help that he is on a 6-game hitting streak.
-Jacoby Ellsbury on fire: Ellsbury has been on fire of late, as he has a 12-game hitting streak in which he is hitting .396. Looks like the old Jacoby is back.