ALDS Game 1: Minnesota Twins @ New York Yankees

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First Pitch:  5:07pm CDT
TV:  TBS
Radio:  Twins Radio Network
Know Thine Enemy:  Pinstripe Alley

Last night was awesome.  Without a doubt one of the greatest games I've experienced as a Twins fan, and that includes the close of 2006.  But that's all over, and it's time to focus on the next challenge, and that comes in the form of the New York Yankees.  The dreaded Bombers.

This year the Yanks owned the Twins, with Minnesota going winless in seven meetings.  But as I said on my Q&A over at Pinstripe Alley, that was when the Twins were playing some pretty bad baseball and it still took the Yankees needing a last-second hit to earn their victory.  Now, the the Twins clicking, this series just might not be the pushover that everyone is expecting.

If the Twins can steal game one, momentum will shift dramatically.  Let's go take down Goliath.


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2009 - CC Sabathia 19-8 34 34 2 1 0 0 230.0 197 96 86 18 67 197 3.37 1.15

Speaking of Goliath, here's our old nemesis Sabathia.  He's having a good season, and in his only start against Minnesota went seven strong innings, holding the Twins to one run off three hits and a walk.  His walk-to-strikeout ratio is the worst it's been in years, but that doesn't mean he's been bad.  Because he hasn't.  Sabathia is still a very good pitcher, and his numbers reflect that.  His flyball ratio is up slightly as well, with the ground-ball rate down, meaning the potential of damaging extra-base hits goes up.  What is interesting about Sabathia this year is that his slider hasn't really been his money pitch.  The changeup is still dominant, but this year it's counterpart has been Sabathia's fastball.  It will be interesting to see which pitch he goes to when he's looking to put someone away.


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2009 - Brian Duensing 5-2 24 9 0 0 0 0 84.0 84 37 34 7 31 53 3.64 1.37

Well Brian, this is why you become a major league pitcher.  It's been a fantastic debut for you and here's hoping you can pick up your first playoff victory today.  We all know what needs to happen here, so godspeed and best of luck.  We're all behind you.  Partially because we support you, but partially because we're afraid C.C. Sabathia might sit on us.  You first.

Lineups

Twins
Denard Span, CF
Orlando Cabrera, SS
Joe Mauer, C
Michael Cuddyer, 1B
Jason Kubel, RF
Delmon Young, LF
Brendan Harris, DH
Matt Tolbert, 3B
Nick Punto, 2B

Yankees
Derek Jeter, SS
Johnny Damon, LF
Mark Teixeira, 1B
Alex Rodriguez, 3B
Hideki Matsui, DH
Jorge Posada, C
Robinson Cano, 2B
Nick Swisher, RF
Melky Cabrera, CF

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