Brett Gardner CF
Ichiro Suzuki RF
Robinson Cano 2B
Travis Hafner DH
Lyle Overbay 1B
Zoilo Almonte LF
Jayson Nix SS
David Adams 3B
Chris Stewart C
RHP Hiroki Kuroda (7-5, 2.78)
Kuroda vs. Rangers
Ian Kinsler 2B
Elvis Andrus SS
Nelson Cruz RF
Adrian Beltre 3B
AJ Pierzynski C
Lance Berkman DH
Mitch Moreland 1B
David Murphy LF
Leonys Martin CF
RHP Yu Darvish (7-3, 2.84)
Darvish vs. Yankees
TIME/TV: 7:05 p.m., MY9 and MLB Network
WEATHER: It’s hot. Like, really hot. There were some clouds out before, but it seems have cleared up here shortly before first pitch. The forecast calls for scattered thunderstorms starting around midnight, so the hope is that they’ll finish this one uninterrupted.
UMPIRES: HP Dan Iassogna, 1B Mark Carlson, 2B Gerry Davis, 3B Brian Knight
LONG STRETCH: Tonight’s game will mark the beginning of a stretch of 20 straight games for the Yankees without a day off leading up the to the All-Star break.
SMALL BALL: The Yankees are 9-21 this year when they don’t hit a home run, which is two more wins than their total amount from all of last season in games in which they didn’t homer.
THE MIGHTY Z: Almonte has combined to go 6-for-10 (.600) with two runs, two doubles, a home run, four RBI and two walks in his first three MLB starts.
(I’ll be updating what’s going on in the game here every so often, but I’ll be much more active on Twitter. Follow me @vzmercogliano to join in the conversation!)
UPDATE, 7:33 p.m.: An eventful first inning results in nothing for the Yanks. Three consecutive singles from Ichiro, Cano and Hafner go to waste as Overbay struck out and Almonte grounded out to second. They had a chance to get a run or two off of Darvish early and missed the opportunity. We’re scoreless going into the second.
UPDATE, 8:02 p.m.: Martin took Kuroda deep in the third to extend his hitting streak to 10 games and give the Rangers a 1-0 lead.
UPDATE, 8:35 p.m.: The Rangers loaded the bases in the top of the fourth and came away with one run to make it 2-0, but the Yankees responded in the bottom half of the inning with a Hafner solo shot. It’s 2-1 Texas as we head into the fifth.
UPDATE, 8:45 p.m.: Another solo homer for Martin and the Rangers now lead 3-1. Where did this guy come from?
UPDATE, 9:02 p.m.: Gardner just hit a solo homer in the fifth to cut the deficit to 3-2 and tie his career-high with seven homers. He’s really developing into a solid all-around player, as opposed to a slap hitter with speed. Imagine where this offense would be without him?