Yankees prepare for showdown with Pirates

David Phelps 4

After an exciting and eventful Subway Series, the Yankees will take the train ride back to the Bronx where they will play another interleague series, this time on their own turf. The Pittsburgh Pirates, who are 17-23 and 8.5 games out of first place, will come play the Yankees who are 21-19 and miraculously only a half game out of first. Yep, that’s the American League East for you.

The Yankees will send David Phelps to the mound to square off against Edison Volquez, and it’s not a secret he’d like to bounce back from his last start, going 5.0 innings while giving up four runs on eight hits and striking out one while earning the no decision against the Milwaukee Brewers. The Yankees would like David Phelps to keep them on a roll, after winning two games where the Yankees pitching staff hadn’t allowed a run in 18 innings of work.

Hiroki Kuroda would also like to have a bounce back outing himself, going six innings while giving up four runs on seven hits and striking out three in his last start against the New York Mets. Kuroda has been very “un-Kuroda-like” for the Yankees, going 2-3 with a 4.62 ERA to begin the season. Kuroda’s troubles usually occur in August-September. Instead they’re here a little earlier and not at a great time. Yankees already have three pitchers from their starting rotation on the disabled list and are only expected to gain two of them back as the season goes along. Kuroda’s turn in the rotation comes tomorrow against Charlie Morton.

The Yankees bats have been the strong point during the Mets series, scoring 20 runs in four games against their crosstown rivals, and they are now hoping to keep the offensive flow going. The Yankees are coming off a Citi Field series win against the Mets, it would be nice if they could have another series win before they head off to Chicago to play the Chicago Cubs and White Sox.

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