Yankees hope to keep the momentum going

David+Phelps

Before yesterdays rain out, it seemed the Yankees gained some momentum against the New York Mets, throwing 18 innings of shutout baseball. Today, the Yankees will send David Phelps to the mound, with hopes of keeping the Yankees on a winning pace.

David Phelps had mixed results since joining the rotation, having one brilliant game and one so-so game. Joe Girardi believes Phelps has what it takes to be a starting pitcher for the Yankees, and he can be a guy the Yankees rely on.

 “I think it’s attacking the zone,” Girardi said of Phelps. “There are days when he just misses, and he has to throw a lot of pitches per inning and it becomes a little bit tougher. He has the repertoire to be successful. He has the pitches to do it, so it’s being ahead in the count, getting some quick outs and not getting into prolonged at-bats. For him, to me, you can tell how his start is going to be, in a sense, with his command – how pinpoint it is – because that’s what he relies on a lot.”

In the meantime, Phelps will have to hold the fort down and give the Yankees a quality outing and to keep the Yankees in the AL East race until the Yankees get their main pieces back.

Some Notes

Jacoby Ellsbury was slated to start today, but he was scratched due to a stomach bug. Brett Gardner will play center field and Zoilo Almonte will make his 2014 debut in LF.

– Girardi said Hiroki Kuroda will pitch the first game of the day/night doubleheader tomorrow. He told Kuroda the decision was up to him, which was why he didn’t announce it yesterday.

Derek Jeter will only play one of the two games tomorrow. I didn’t think Jeter was going to play back to back games anyway, considering he’s almost 40-years old. “I’ll talk to Derek and see, but I can’t tell you which one I’m going to play him in yet,” he said when asked if Jeter would play in Game 1 or 2. “I haven’t had a chance to talk to him. I would think he would only play one game.”

Ichiro Suzuki will play one of the two doubleheader games, according to Girardi. Ichiro took BP yesterday and said he could come in during a pinch-hit or pinch-run situation.

Michael Pineda will throw a 25-pitch bullpen session tomorrow. Pineda threw a 20-pitch bullpen session after yesterday’s rain out.

– Here are today’s “Stat Pack” Notes!

1) The Yankees have recorded all four of their shutouts this season against NL teams (4/16 doubleheader vs. Cubs; and 5/14-15 at the Mets)…had recorded four
shutouts in their previous 37 Interleague games dating to 5/19/12…

a) Recorded consecutive shutouts in Interleague play twice this season…had accomplished that feat only once prior to this season (6/15 and 6/17/08)…have never posted three consecutive shutouts against NL teams.

b) Last recorded three consecutive shutout victories 6/6-8/62 (vs. Cleveland, 5-0; vs. Cleveland, 4-0; vs. Baltimore, 1-0). Had 10 SHO in 2013, their highest total since 2008 (11).

2) : RHP Dellin Betances has recorded 39 of his 67 outs this season via strikeout, including 23 of his last 35 (since his last three BF on 4/26)… has struck out multiple batters in 13 of his 15 appearances this season in which he has faced at least two batters, including 11 straight from 4/8-5/10.

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