With a 12:30 start today, the Yankees’ two games in Toronto feel more like a night-day double header than anything one might call a “series,” but whatever it is, it’s wrapping up this afternoon with Mike Mussina facing Ted Lilly. Moose has been surprisingly solid in his three starts this year, but has twice been outpitched by men more than a dozen years his junior. Fortunately for Moose, Lilly is just seven years younger than him.
For his part, Lilly had nothing in his first start, walking six in 2 1/3 innings before getting the hook, but came up aces against Boston in his last outing, using a nasty looping curve to rack up ten strikeouts while holding the Sox to one run on six hits through seven and not walking a single batter. The Yankees have had good success against left-handed curveballers thus far this year, beating the tar out of Barry Zito (7 runs in 1 1/3 innings) and Jeremy Affeldt (6 runs in 3 1/3 innings). Here’s hoping that trend continues today.
Andy Phillips is scheduled to start at first base for the first time this year with Jason Giambi DHing, while Tanyon Sturtze is unavailable due to back pain. I consider both of these things good news. With Aaron Small just two rehab appearances away from being activated, I’d like to see Sturtze be the man he replaces in the pen. Wishful thinking, I know, but the Yanks have been trying to put wheels on this pumpkin for far too long already.