"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

Shutdown Mode

With four meaningless games left, the Yankees have mothballed Andy Pettitte for the year, giving Sidney Ponson his start on Saturday. Ponson and tonight’s starter Pavano won’t be back next year. Tomorrow night’s starter, Alfredo Aceves, has already shown enough to survive a bad start and still arrive in spring training to fight for a rotation spot. The means the only remaining game that will actually be worth watching will be Sunday’s finale in Boston as Mike Mussina goes for his 20th win (which he will do; his elbow is recovering nicely).

Here’s tonight’s lineup:

L – Brett Gardner (CF)
L – Robinson Cano (2B)
L – Bobby Abreu (DH)
R – Xavier Nady (RF)
L – Jason Giambi (1B)
S – Wilson Betemit (3B)
R – Cody Ransom (SS)
S – Melky Cabrera (LF)
R – Francisco Cervelli (C)

Derek Jeter is still sitting due to being hit on the left hand on Saturday and playing through it on Sunday. Cervelli is making his first major league start. This is just Melky’s second start since being recalled (he went 1 for 3 in the last, accounting for his only trips to the plate since August). Brett Gardner is 8 for his last 23 (.348) with three extra-base hits. Wilson Betemit 6 for 19 (.316) in September with four extra base hits, but hasn’t drawn a walk since August 16. Ransom is 0 for his last 16.

Perhaps most significantly, tonight’s game will bring Carl Pavano’s phantom Yankee career to a close. He faces Roy Halladay, who’s going for his 20th win. Halladay’s only previous 20-win season was 2003, when he went 22-7 and won the AL Cy Young award.

Meanwhile, Joe Torre’s Dodgers have clinched the NL West. Congratulations to the Dodgers, their manager, and their fans.

Categories:  Cliff Corcoran  Game Thread

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"This ain't football. We do this every day."
--Earl Weaver