The last time the Yankees saw the Cleveland Guardians, they rocked a little baby to sleep, dismissing Cleveland in Games 4 and 5 of the 2022 ALDS, following a devastating walkoff.
The Guards will reunite with Clarke Schmidt, the man who surrendered that Oscar González single, in the third game of this set. But for now, the focus is very much on the present instead.
Both teams have lived up to expectations thus far in 2023. With all babies currently asleep, the only things the Yankees rocked in Baltimore this past weekend were baseballs into the left-field seats. Maybe it's time for the Orioles to move that wall back again?
Cleveland's only worry heading into this home showdown is their bullpen being taxed; while the Yankees are coming off a tidy 5-3 victory in nine innings, the Guardians had to use everyone in their stock room to finish off a wild 7-6 victory in 12 against Seattle. James Karinchak, Emmanuel Clase and Trevor Stephan all pitched, though Clase somehow hadn't thrown between April 5 and April 9. Lucky.
The Yankees have the more undermanned bullpen heading into this set, having just lost Jonathan Loaisiga for a while, but at least Cleveland's most recent contest was more chaotic.
Yankees Lineup for Monday, April 10 vs Guardians
If you're going to use Isiah Kiner-Falefa, you'd better use him at third. Luckily, the Yankees listened.
Plus, welcome to the Bronx Bombers, Willie Calhoun!
Yankees Pitching Probables for Monday, April 10 vs Guardians
The Yankees won't have to reckon with spindly right-hander (and childhood Yankees fan) Triston McKenzie this series; he's still rehabbing from a shoulder strain, and will resume throwing soon.
That doesn't mean they're out of the woods, though. This is Cleveland. Behind every effective starting pitcher are two more effective starting pitchers waiting to blossom.
In the opener, the Yanks will get Cleveland's ace Shane Bieber, who's posted an 0.83 WHIP in 12 innings (without a homer allowed) to begin the season. Opposing him will be Domingo Germán, who was bumped back in favor of Jhony Brito along with the rest of the rotation this past weekend. The long ball hurt him in his 2023 debut against the Phillies, but his WHIP is also a rock solid 0.86, and he struck out eight Phils in 4.2 innings (his line further tarnished by Michael King).