Derek Jeter’s not a big scouting report guy. Apparently he never has been. Even three hits away from No. 3,000, Jeter left Cleveland last night with absolutely no idea which pitchers he was about to face during this four-game series against the Rays.
“I don’t look ahead,” he said. “I know we play Tampa. I’m not exactly sure who we face, in what order. We’ve got four games, so we see all of them pretty much. I learned a long time ago that you can get into trouble if you look too far ahead.”
Here’s how Jeter’s done against the four Rays starters he’ll be facing this series.
Tonight: RHP Jeff Niemann
5-for-9 with two doubles, a walk and a strikout
Niemann is a big guy with a fastball in the low 90s and a curveball that he throws pretty often. He’s made only nine starts this season because of a lower back strain.
Friday: RHP Jeremy Hellickson
1-for-2 with no extra-base hits or strikeouts
Obviously a pretty meaningless sample size against the Rays young right-hander. Hellickson has been awfully good in his first full season as a big league starter.
Saturday: LHP David Price
6-for-26 with a home run, a double, five strikeouts and three walks
One of the best left-handers in baseball, Price is an all-star — at the expense of CC Sabathia — and has pitched well, but the Yankees had some success when they faced him in May. Jeter went 0-for-3 that day.
Sunday: RHP James Shields
17-for-54 with a double, a home run, a walk and eight strikeouts
Shields has been tremendous this season, but he’s lost two in a row. Jeter’s had some success getting hits against him in the past, but the last time he faced Shields, Jeter struck out three times.