Brett Gardner CF
Ichiro Suzuki RF
Robinson Cano 2B
Lyle Overbay 1B
Vernon Wells LF
Travis Hafner DH
Eduardo Nunez SS
Chris Stewart C
Luis Cruz 3B
LHP CC Sabathia (9-8, 4.07)
Sabathia vs. Red Sox
RED SOX (59-40)
Jacoby Ellsbury CF
Shane Victorino RF
Dustin Pedroia 2B
David Ortiz DH
Mike Napoli 1B
Jonny Gomes LF
Jarrod Saltalamacchia C
Stephen Drew SS
Jose Iglesias 3B
RHP Ryan Dempster (5-8, 4.24)
Dempster vs. Yankees
TIME/TV: 8:05 p.m., ESPN
WEATHER: It’s cooled down quite a bit. Temperatures in the 70s, with the best chances of rain having already passed.
UMPIRES: HP Paul Emmel, 1B Dan Bellino, 2B Mike Everitt, 3B Tim Welke
THEY SAY IT’S YOUR BIRTHDAY: CC Sabathia will celebrate his 33rd birthday today. He has made three previous starts on his birthday (2002 and 2006 with Cleveland and 2011 with the Yankees), going 0-2 with a 5.94 ERA. He took the loss in his 2011 birthday start at Tampa Bay despite throwing a complete-game five-hitter.
CANOTABLE: Robinson Cano has hit safely in a Yankees-season-high 11 straight games since July 6. It’s his longest hitting streak since a 23-game run last year. Cano also has 198 career home runs and needs two more to become the 16th player in franchise history to reach the 200-homer plateau. He needs four homers to tie Bill Dickey for 16th place on the Yankees’ all-time list.
UPDATE, 8:50 p.m.: Well, the Yankees are off to a strong start here. They’ve scored three early runs — the first two coming largely because of Red Sox mistakes — and lead 3-0 after an inning and a half. But, of course, it’s all Alex all the time tonight, and he just released this statement through his PR people.
“I am extremely disappointed with the results of the MRI and hoping to be back as soon as possible and continue with my goal of coming back and helping the Yankees win a championship.”
UPDATE, 9:20 p.m.: This thing turned around in a hurry. Must be nice to have an offense capable of hitting the ball out of the park. Napoli’s three-run shot has put the Red Sox in front 4-3 in the third inning. Sabathia has now tied his career high for the most home runs he’s ever allowed in a season.
UPDATE, 10:01 p.m.: And Sabathia has now reached a new career-high for home runs allowed in a season. He’s coughed up seven runs tonight, four of them on homers, and that early Yankees lead is long, long gone.
UPDATE, 10:29 p.m.: Aside from Cano, Overbay’s pretty much the only Yankees batter driving the ball these days. There’s no power anywhere else in the lineup, but he just hit into an inning-crushing double play that stops a mild rally after just two runs. It’s now 7-5 Red Sox in the bottom of the sixth.
UPDATE, 10:31 p.m.: That’s all from CC, disappointing way to start his second half. Here’s Claiborne to face Victorino after the leadoff walk to Ellsbury.
UPDATE, 10:53 p.m.: Good job by Claiborne to work out of the sixth, but it says a lot that Travis Hafner was just pulled in favor of Brent Lillibridge. Hafner’s been brutal lately. Actually, it goes well beyond lately.
UPDATE, 11:01 p.m.: We’re tied here after an error and an RBI grounder to shortstop.
UPDATE, 11:11 p.m.: Gardner just fouled off eight straight 3-2 pitches before drawing a walk. That’s a fine 15-pitch at-bat. Fouled off 10 pitches total.
UPDATE, 11:58 p.m.: After Cruz made his weird play — I assume he didn’t have a good grip on the ball — I wonder if Robertson told him, “I know you’re new, but I get out of this stuff all the time.”
UPDATE, 12:37 a.m.: Shawn Kelley has struck out five in a row these past two innings. Boone Logan struck out three in a row earlier tonight. Total, the Yankees bullpen has 10 strikeouts in five innings, and none of those strikeouts came from Dave Robertson.