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Game 134: Blue Jays at Yankees

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YANKEES (71-62)
Damon CF
Jeter SS
Abreu RF
A. Rodriguez 3B
Giambi 1B
Nady LF
Matsui DH
Cano 2B
I. Rodriguez C
Pavano RHP

Carl Pavano (1-0, 5.40) vs. the Toronto hitters [2]

A.J. Burnett (16-9, 4.58) vs. the New York hitters. [3]

Notes: Thanks to Kevin Devaney for texting in the lineup. … The Yankees scored three or fewer runs 57 times in 133 games, or 43 percent of the time. How amazing is that? … The Yankees are three games ahead of the Jays and play them six more times.

IDLE CHATTER: This will be Carl Pavano’s first appearance at the Stadium since Opening Day 2007. … He is 1-2, 5.40 against the Blue Jays in his career but hasn’t faced them since 2005.

BURN, BABY BURN: A.J. Burnett is 3-0 with a 1.61 ERA against the Yankees this season in three starts.

EVEN UP: The Yankees are 6-6 against the Jays, although they have been outscored 57-44.

BUTCH AND SUNDANCE: Pavano and Burnett were teammates with the Marlins from 2002-04. They then became financial wizards. Pavano got four years and $39.95 million from the Yankees before the 2005 season and has given him 20 starts and six wins.

Burnett landed a FA deal from the Blue Jays before the 2006 season and has so far produced 74 starts and a 36-25 record for $31 milion. Like Pavano, his commitment has been questioned because of some shadowy injuries. Now Burnett pitching well and is expected to exercise the opt-out clause in his deal.

Back later with updates.

UPDATE, 4:32 p.m.: This from MLB:

Major League Baseball suspended three minor leaguers Friday for violating the league’s drug prevention and treatment program. Handed 50-game suspensions were pitchers Justo Arias and Rafael Martinez of the New York Yankees and pitcher Jhon Rodriguez of the Chicago Cubs.

All three players, who are playing in the Dominican Summer league, tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs – Arias and Martinez for Stanozolol and Rodriguez for Nandrolone.

UPDATE, 5:18 p.m.: Joe Girardi, on his paid spot on WFAN, just said that Joba Chamberlain could be activated next week and that it would be as a reliever. That’s sort of news. Maybe the beat writers need to pay him. I’ll set up a Pay Pal account or something.

(To be fair, Girardi did tell the writers the same thing. But he was awfully chummy with Evan Roberts).

UPDATE, 6:40 p.m.: A-Rod got stuck in traffic today and missed batting practice. But he has arrived at the Stadium and will play.

Meanwhile Jeter left his place early and stopped twice on his way to the stadium to escort blind old ladies across the street. And he got Starbucks.

UPDATE, 8:03 p.m.: Sorry for the lack of updates. I am not at the Stadium tonight. I’m doing some work from home.

All kidding aside on Pavano, if he continues to pitch well today, shouldn’t Brian Cashman try and trade him before Aug. 31? They’re obviously not bringing him back, so send him to a contender and try to get a decent prospect back for him.

UPDATE, 8:41 p.m.: That was the first career hit for Snider, who was called up when they DFA’d Matt Stairs.

It’s hard to tell on television, but Pavano seems to be giving up a lot of rockets that his outfielders are making nice plays on. Get six innings out of him and be happy with that.

UPDATE, 8:48 p.m.: The countdown lever was pulled by the grandchildren of former clubhouse manager Pete Sheehy. Not a dry eye in the house.

UPDATE, 8:55 p.m.: No matter what happens, smart move by Girardi taking out Pavano. Six innings was enough, use the bullpen.

UPDATE, 9:24 p.m.: Why take Marte out after six pitches? Jose Veras should not be the 8th inning guy, that’s why you have Marte. Now they’re in trouble. Bruney for one batter is a waste, too.

UPDATE, 9:33 p.m.: Wow, what a job by Mariano.

But after getting four outs yesterday, he’ll need to get five outs today. And he got four outs last Sunday. Three multiple-inning outings in six days are a lot for Rivera.

UPDATE, 9:48 p.m.: Mariano Rivera certainly earned that save. How amazing is he?

A.J. Burnett goes 8 7 2 2 1 8 and takes a loss.

UPDATE, 9:52 p.m.: Um, Pavano is 2-0. He has allowed one run in his last nine innings.

Since anything is now possible, I’m going to call Blake Lively and see if she wants to go to Vegas for the weekend.