Are you ready for some baseball? That doesn’t start until after 830? What a delight for us on the east coast!
Yep, it all starts here: the chase for a 28th World Series Championship begins in the Bronx tonight as the Yankees meet the Tigers in game 1 of the ALDS, featuring a match up of titans in the persons of Justin Verlander and C.C. Sabathia.
As I mentioned a few weeks ago, C.C. Sabathia’s numbers from August until the close of the season concern me a bit, particularly when looking at his hits to innings pitched and his WHIP. Hopefully, the extra rest he’s received in the last week will bring him out of the box firing, but my understanding is that Sabathia is not particularly successful on extra rest, but we’ll have to hope for the best. So besides worrying about C.C. getting his butt kicked, we have to worry about Justin Verlander, too.
Verlander has faced the Yankees twice this year:
March 31: 6 IP, 3 hits, 3 runs, 3 ER, 1 homer, 4 BB, 8 Ks
May 2: 6 IP, 8 hits, 3 runs, 3 ER, 4 BB, 8 Ks
In the early goings of the season, Verlander wasn’t exactly setting the world on fire… as opposed to June and July, when he was. Maybe he likes the warm weather… He’s not going to get much of that tonight when it rains ALL GAME LONG!
June: 6 wins in 6 starts, 0.92 ERA, 2 complete games, 49 IP, 29 hits, 5 runs, 5 ER, 3 homers, 3 hit batters, 6 walks, 0 IBB, 54 Ks
July: 4 wins and 2 loses in 6 starts, 1.99 ERA, 45.1 IP, 33 hits, 14 runs, 10 ER, 2 HR, 0 hit batters, 7 BB, 0 IBB, 48 Ks
Verlander was just good in August with a 3.12 ERA in August and better in September with a 2.55 ERA, but not dominating the planet earth like he had in June and July. Still, he wasn’t exactly facing the Yankees and the Red Sox in those months, and thanks to some inter-league in June, he got to throw 7 IP of 1 run ball against the Mets.
Weather permitting, we’ll find out whether it’s the opponent, just getting stronger in the middle of the year or the weather itself that makes Verlander so dominant.
His amazing arsenal of pitches probably helps.