Derek Jeter SS
Nick Swisher RF
Mark Teixeira 1B
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Robinson Cano 2B
Marcus Thames LF
Jorge Posada DH
Francisco Cervelli C
Brett Gardner CF
RHP A.J. Burnett (10-12, 5.15)
Burnett vs. Orioles
Brian Roberts 2B
Felix Pie LF
Nick Markakis RF
Luke Scott DH
Matt Wieters C
Ty Wigginton 1B
Corey Patterson CF
Cesar Izturis SS
Josh Bell 3B
LHP Brian Matusz (7-12, 4.72)
Matusz vs. Yankees
TIME/TV: 1:05 p.m. / YES Network
UMPIRES: HP Laz Diaz, 1B Wally Bell, 2B John Hirschbeck, 3B James Hoye
WEATHER: Another good day for a day game. Temperatures in the 70s without a cloud in sight.
HAPPY HOLIDAY: Since 1961, the Yankees are 33-26 on Labor Day. They swept a Labor Day double header against Tampa Bay last year, and the last time they played the Orioles on Labor Day was 1992 when the Yankees won 6-2 at Camden Yards. That was a 13-inning game.
GOOD MATCHUP: The Yankees first two starters this series are A.J. Burnett and CC Sabathia, who are 24-4 in their careers against the Orioles.
BAD MATCHUP: Nick Swisher is returning to the lineup just in time to face Brian Matusz. Swisher is 0-for-12 with one walk in his career against the young Orioles lefty.
ABOUT A.J.: Burnett has allowed a .362 opponents batting average in the first inning this season. From the second inning on, he’s allowed a .265 average… Burnett has allowed a major league leading 34 stolen bases in 157.1 innings this season. According to Elias, that’s the highest total by a Yankee since Roger Clemens allowed 34 in 220.1 innings in 2001… Burnett went winless in August but won his first start of September. According to Elias, Burnett is winless in his past 13 August starts dating back to 2008.
JUST AN OBSERVATION: Yesterday, the Yankees starting outfield was Brett Gardner, Curtis Granderson and Greg Golson, which very easily could have been the fastest outfield in baseball this season. Today the starting outfield is Gardner surrounded by banged-up Nick Swisher and heckuva-hitter Marcus Thames. I’m just sayin.
UPDATE, 1:15 p.m.: A 1-2-3 first inning for A.J. Burnett. That seems like a good sign.
UPDATE, 1:52 p.m.: Brett Gardner nearly made a great catch. Instead the ball fell for a double, and two batters later, a double play drove that run in for a 1-0 Orioles lead in the third inning.
UPDATE, 2:16 p.m.: The Yankees still haven’t scored, but A.J. Burnett is through four innings with only one run on two hits. He’s been plenty good enough.
UPDATE, 2:17 p.m.: Scratch that. Alex Rodriguez is back, and he just homered to tie the game at 1.
UPDATE, 2:30 p.m.: RBI single by Brian Roberts the Orioles the lead again at 2-1. Still, so far this game is on the offense. Burnett has been perfectly fine.
UPDATE, 2:56 p.m.: Burnett’s been able to limit the damage, which is the reason he’s been alright today. But for the third time, he has the first two batters of an inning on base in the top of the sixth.
UPDATE, 3:04 p.m.: One run on a sacrifice fly. Burnett continues to keep the damage to a minimum, and he’s made some big pitches, but he has the Yankees in a 3-1 hole.
UPDATE, 3:12 p.m.: After Rodriguez got his 100th RBI of the season on a sac fly, Teixeira did a nice job on the bases, getting pretty far off third base just in case a blooper from Cano fell. It did fall, Teixeira scored and the Yankees have tied the game at 3.
UPDATE, 3:19 p.m.: Burnett is back out for the seventh. Joba Chamberlain is up in the bullpen. Curtis Granderson is playing center, Brett Gardner has shifted to left and Marcus Thames is out of the game.
UPDATE, 3:26 p.m.: Another lead-off man on base, another run off A.J. Burnett. He hasn’t had one of those big innings when he gets absolutely crushed, but his start has become less and less solid as it’s continued. He’s now allowed a run in three straight innings.
UPDATE, 3:36 p.m.: Greg Golson is here for his speed. Getting thrown out trying to steal second, that’s not part of the plan.
UPDATE, 3:57 p.m.: Boone Logan gets in trouble, Dave Robertson gets out of it and the Yankees have two innings to score at least one run. Still down 4-3.