American League Preview from The Sports Network|
Saturday, April 28th
(All times Eastern)
Detroit Tigers (10-10) at New York Yankees (11-8), 4:05 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Detroit - Drew Smyly (0-0, 1.13)
New York - Freddy Garcia (0-1, 9.75)
(Sports Network) - Left-hander Drew Smyly takes another crack at his first
major league win this afternoon when the Detroit Tigers continue a three-game
series with the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium.
Despite being held out of the win column, Smyly has been terrific in his three
starts, yielding only two earned runs in 16 innings of work. He's also the
first Tigers pitcher since at least 1918 to hold his opponents to one run or
less in each of his first three major league starts.
"He's got really good command on all his pitches right now," catcher Alex
Avila said, "and he's just throwing a lot of strikes, mixing it up well. He
threw fantastic. He's really improved a lot from spring training and from the
first start. He was impressive then, and he seems like he's getting better
On Sunday against Texas Smyly again did not get a decision, despite giving up
just a run and five hits in six innings. His seven strikeouts, though, marked
the most from a Tigers rookie left-hander since Andrew Miller did the same in
"It'll come," Smyly said. "That's just how baseball goes. We'll start hitting
a lot more. Our lineup is just as good as any lineup in the league. It's just
a matter of time."
New York, meanwhile, will counter with veteran right-hander Freddy Garcia, who
may be pitching to keep his spot in the rotation.
Garcia couldn't get out of the second inning in Boston last Saturday, as he
allowed five runs and seven hits in just 1 2/3 frames. Amazingly, he escaped
without a decision when his team overcame a nine-run deficit to score 15
unanswered runs and post a win.
"Every pitch I was throwing, they hit," said Garcia, who's 0-1 with a 9.75
earned run average this season. "I threw a couple of good pitches in the first
inning, and they hit it."
Garcia has dominated the Tigers over the course of his career, posting an 18-8
mark to go along with a 3.88 ERA in 32 starts.
The Yanks kicked off a six-game homestand on Friday in thrilling fashion, as
they rallied for a 7-6 win.
With the score tied 6-6 heading into the bottom of the ninth inning, Derek
Jeter, who went 0-for-4 to snap a 15-game hitting streak, drew a one-out walk.
On the final pitch of Curtis Granderson's at-bat, also a walk, Jeter advanced
all the way to third on Brayan Villarreal's (0-1) pitch in the dirt that
ricocheted sharply off of Avila's shin pad.
Jeter then came home on a passed ball during Alex Rodriguez's plate appearance
to give New York its fifth win in its last seven games.
Rodriguez finished with three hits, including a solo homer, two RBI and a pair
of runs scored, while Mariano Rivera (1-1) picked up the win with a 1-2-3
"It was nice to start the homestand with a good win, especially being behind
twice in that game and being able to come back against a top-notch pitcher
like [Justin] Verlander," remarked Rodriguez. "It's definitely a good sign."
Miguel Cabrera drove in a run for the Tigers, making him the sixth youngest
player to reach 1,000 RBI in MLB history. Only Mel Ott, Jimmie Foxx, Lou
Gehrig, Rodriguez and Ken Griffey Jr. have reached the milestone sooner.
"He's a tremendous young player, there's no question about that," said Detroit
manager Jim Leyland about Cabrera. "He'll get another thousand before his
career's over. He's that kind of player."
Mired in a 3-for-24 slump, Austin Jackson registered four hits, drove in two
runs and scored twice for Detroit, which defeated New York in five games in
last year's ALDS.
The Tigers were 4-3 against the Yankees last season.
04/28 10:32:31 ET