The Yankees host the Mariners in game one of their series tomorrow in the Bronx. A classic pitching duel matchup has the total set at a low 7 with the home Yanks listed as slight -115 favorites.
The home side is led by their ace CC Sabathia against the weak lineup of the Seattle Mariners. Sabathia has turned it on lately with just six earned runs allowed in his last three starts overall. The big lefty has also dominated the Mariners in his career and he has the home crowd behind him tomorrow as the first-place Yankees go back home after an eight game road trip. Current Mariners have posted just a combined .249 mark against Sabathia in nearly 200 total at-bats and only a .312 on-base percentage to go along with it. It should be noted that Raul Ibanez has nearly a quarter of Seattle’s career hits against Sabathia. His 12 career base knocks against the Yankees’ ace came over the course of a career on several different clubs earlier in his career. The aging slugger is struggling to even surpass .200 this season in the twilight of his career. Sabathia will look to bring the energy and provide his team with a stellar start back at home against a team he should dominate. He will be extra motivated going up against one of the best pitchers in the game and notable Yankee nemesis “King” Felix Hernandez, who takes the bump for the visitors.
The Bronx Bombers will not be happy to see Hernandez jogging out from the opposing dugout on Tuesday. The guy many consider the finest pitcher in the game today will take the field for Seattle in the midst of another Cy Young caliber season. Hernandez’s ERA is hovering just above 1.50 with a WHIP well under 1.00. What may be even more impressive is Hernandez’s track record against the Yankees – whose lineup is already a shell of its usual self despite carrying New York to a first-place standing in the American League East thus far in the young season. The Yankees as a team hit just .266 against Felix Hernandez and and 50 of the 100 career hits have come from the combination of Jeter, Teixeira, Rodriguez and Curtis Granderson – who will all be out with injury for tomorrow’s game. While the Yankees replacements have done a fantastic job filling in for their stars, producing offense against one of the game’s best will be a tall task for a group of overachievers on Tuesday night. Expect New York to take a conservative approach and try to manufacture runs against Hernandez and attempt to win a close pitcher’s duel on their home turf.
This should be a dandy is you are a fan of pitching. Neither offense should pose much of a threat to the opposing starting pitcher and the total of 7 appears to be about half a run too high in this one. Take the under here and expect to come out with nothing worse than a push in what should be a very low-scoring game.