All Eyes On Tanaka As Yanks Open Regular Season Finale Series

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On the heels of last night’s absolute stinker against Tampa — combined with a 12-2 Astros beatdown on Boston, no less — let’s cut the BS about an AL East crown for the pinstripes. With a 4-1 lead and Sonny Gray on the mound the Yankees 5th inning epic meltdown (giving up 7 runs) put the dagger in that.
With the tragic number at 1 with three games to play, the focus turns now to resting the right guys and getting some playing time for others. Some postseason roster decisions need to made, so we’ll need to keep a close eye on who is starting and who is sitting.
But the big question today is which Masahiro Tanaka will show up? He’s 12-12 on the season with a 4.94 ERA and 1.27 WHIP, and has been inconsistent over his last five starts. If the Yankees do indeed win the Wild Card play-in, Tanaka would likely start Game 2 of the ALDS, and the club needs him to be dialed in.

Friday, September 29, 2017 vs Toronto Blue Jays

Key Stats At-A-Glance

Money Line : Jays +214, Yankees -233
Over/Under : 8.5
Line Moves : Late scratch coming in on New York
Park Factors : Yankee Stadium is considered a hitter’s park.
Weather : 66°, partly cloudy, Wind NW 5MPH, 0% chance of rain.

Trends

  • The Blue Jays are 3-6 in their last nine games at Yankee Stadium.
  • The Over/Under has gone over is 4 of the last six games between these teams at Yankee Stadium.
  • Toronto is 14-12 (.538) as a road underdog.

Joe Biagini vs The Yankees

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Joe Biagini ($6,500) has been on the losing end of four of his last six starts, with two no-decisions. He is 3-12 with a 5.34 ERA and a WHIP of 1.40 over 17 starts this season. He’s equally bad at home and on the road, and neither lefties (.252) nor righties (.279) have too much trouble with him. His last win came on July 26th against Oakland, which was in relief.
Here’s who to consider in today’s lineup.

  • Aaron Judge ($5,700) : Judge takes an 11-game hitting streak into this afternoon’s contest, including his 14th home run (52nd on the season) in last nights horror story. Keep Judge in your lineup at any cost.
  • Didi Gregorius ($4,600) : Didi is 3-7 with an RBI off Biagini, but he has cooled down a bit. Look for him to get it going again today.
  • Gary Sanchez ($4,900) : The Kracken is also killing’ it in September with a .317 BA, 26 hits including 5 home runs and 13 RBI.

Masahiro Tanaka vs The Toronto Blue Jays

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Masahiro Tanaka ($9,300) needs to show up big time this afternoon against Toronto. Baseball — especially in New York — is based on ‘what have you done for me lately’, and Tanaka needs to get back on track. He’s had a spotty four starts over September — either pitching well into the seventh inning or getting shellacked. Toronto torched him last week for seven earned runs in 5.2 innings, including three home runs.
Over his September starts Tanaka is 2-2 with 6.46 ERA, allowing 17 earned runs in 23.2 innings and six home runs.
Here’s who Tanaka needs to be careful with in the Jays lineup:

  • Teoscar Hernandez ($3,200) : Hernandez is the pride of Toronto’s batch of young prospects and has already shown he can handle major league pitching. He has one home run against Tanaka in 3 at bats.
  • Josh Donaldson ($4,600) : The Jay’s starting third baseman has been hot over the last month of the season, including smacking a pair of dingers off Chris Sale this week. Tanaka has handled Donaldson well (4-28, .143) but that could change today.

 
After this it’s just two more in the regular season. Man, that went quick. Tomorrow’s game is a 7:05pm EST start time.
 
THE FINE PRINT : The fantasy lineup suggestions are purely speculation and should not be taken as gospel. Anything can and will happen in a baseball game, but this content is designed to provide a starting point for your lineup research. Best of luck, and let’s go Yankees!

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