Over the past few seasons, beating the Royals had all the drama and sense of accomplishment of stealing candy from a fish in a barrel. Or something like that. But this Royals team is not the collection of pushovers they’ve been in recent years. They’re 6th in the AL in Runs scored, have a bunch of big prospects they’ve just recently promoted and quite a few more on the way. They still can’t pitch a lick (14th in team ERA) but a lineup featuring Hosmer, Moustakas, Gordon and yes, Melky Cabrera might look a lot better in retrospect a few years down the road. Many of us thought the 2003 Marlins had a bunch of no names, and looking back it’s practically an All Star team. They’re definitely a team to watch as a breakout candidate in the coming years, particularly in that division.
Here’s your lineup, courtesy of Chad Jennings over at LoHud:
Derek Jeter SS
Curtis Granderson CF
Mark Teixeira 1B
Robinson Cano 2B
Nick Swisher RF
Andruw Jones DH
Russell Martin C
Eduardo Nunez 3B
Brett Gardner LF
It appears that we should get used to seeing Gardner down at the #9 spot of the lineup. He’s been there the past three games, facing both a righty and a hard throwing lefty. Girardi will often lead Gardner off facing a Righthander and drop him down facing a tough lefty. But Bruce Chen is anything but tough, he averages 87 MPH with his fastball and the Yanks have a history (9.62 ERA past 10 games) of destroying him. With Alex due to come back this weekend, batting Gardner 9th allows Girardi to slide A-Rod right back into the cleanup spot without rearranging the lineup any further. I don’t love it, the best Yankee lineup has Gardner leading off and Derek batting 7th, but we all know that’s just not going to happen. Matt covered this the other day, and I agree wholeheartedly with his assessment. It shouldn’t matter much anyway, at least not tonight.
Big Bart on the mound, which is always fun to watch. GO YANKS!!!!!
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