7:00 PM ET, September 25, 2013
Yankee Stadium, New York, New York
Tampa Bay: Price (8-8, 3.43 ERA)
New York: Hughes (4-13, 5.07 ERA)
Tonight the Tampa Bay Rays will try to extend their longest win streak in over two months when they faced the nearly eliminated New York Yankees.
The Rays (88-69) cruised to a 7-0 win in last night’s opener to maintain its one-game lead over Cleveland Indians for the AL’s top wild-card. Tampa Bays has a magic number of four to reach the MLB playoffs.
The Yankees (82-75), which have dropped seven of 10, will be eliminated with one more defeat or one more win versus Cleveland. New York has made the postseason 17 times in the previous 18 years.
Tampa Bay us currently dealing with a number of injuries, with shortstop Yunel Escobar and catcher Jose Lobaton exiting last night.
Escobar was lifted with a sore left ankle and Lobaton has a bruised right elbow. Both players are day to day. Moreover, Desmond Jennings has missed the last two games with a tight left hamstring. YouWager experts are unsure on when he will return.
The Rays pitchers have posted a 1.67 ERA during the five-game streak, their longest since a six-game run July 13-22.
David Price (8-5, 3.43 ERA) will try to extend that trend and earn his first win of September. The left-hander’s 0-3 with a 4.05 ERA in his last five outings, allowing two runs in five innings Friday in a 5-4, 18-inning victory versus the Baltimore Orioles.
Price is 1-1 with a 3.21 ERA in two starts versus the Bronx Bombers in 2014 — both at home. The Tennessee native is 4-1 with a 3.79 ERA in his last six outings in the Bronx.
The will counter with Phil Hughes (4-13, 5.07) who will take the place of CC Sabathia, who won’t pitch again in 2013 due to a left hamstring strain.
Hughes is 0-6 with a 5.33 ERA in his last 12 starts. In the right-hander’s last two outings, he pitched three innings Sept. 12 at Baltimore and lasted 3 1/3 last Wednesday versus the Toronto Blue Jays, with left-hander David Huff replacing him both times. Huff took Hughes’ place in the rotation Sept. 7 versus the Boston Red Sox.