New York Yankees vs. Detroit Tigers
After an exciting finish to the regular season, the 2011 ALDS gets underway and the New York Yankees and Detroit Tigers meet in the Bronx for game one of their series. The Yankees are -120 favorites over the Tigers with an over/under run total set at 7.
When the season began many thought the New York Yankees’ run was about to come to an end as their stars are aging and the other teams in the division were catching up but apparently someone forgot the tell this to the Yankees. The Yankees finished with the best record in the American League and winning the American League East by six games. While some may question the Yankees resting of players after clinching, Manager Joe Girardi was outspoken regarding the short turnaround time between the end of the season and the start of this series. This is a Yankees lineup that is tough from top to bottom with Robinson Cano finishing the season with a .302 average and 28 home runs, Derek Jeter showing he still has something in the tank hitting .297, and Curtis Granderson banging 41 home runs for second best in the A.L. besting Mark Teixeira whose 39 was second best on New York and third in the A.L.. Granderson led the American League in RBI’s with 119 followed by Cano with 118 while Teixeira finished fourth in the A.L. with 111 giving the Yankees three of the top four run producers in the league. Alex Rodriguez was injured for a good part of the year but still played in 99 games. If there is a concern on the Yankees it’s starting pitching but not for game one as the Yankees state C.C. Sabathia who is likely playing his last season for the Yankees. Sabathia had another solid season winning 19 games as he allowed 230 hits and 79 earned runs while striking out 230 over 237.1 innings of work.
Last season Jim Leyland’s Detroit Tigers folded after the All Star break; this season it was a different story as the Tigers put their foot on the gas and ran away with the American League Central. The Tigers had the third best record in the American League this season but it was only two games off the pace set by the Yankees and they won their division by the widest margin of any team this season, 15 games. As the season started to wind down the Tigers looked to be losing some of their momentum but they finished strong winning their last four games and seven of their last 10. There aren’t many slouches in the Detroit lineup as Miguel Cabrera won the batting title in the A.L. with a .344 average with 30 home runs and 105 RBI’s while Victor Martinez hit .330, Jhonny Peralta hit .299, and Alex Avilla hit .295. For game one of the post season the Tigers go with their ace and the probable American League Cy Young Award winner Justin Verlander who led the Majors with 24 wins and whose no decision in his last start ended a streal of 12 consecutive starts ending in a winning decision. For the season Verlander has allowed 174 hits and 67 earned runs while striking out 250 over 251 innings of work.
New York is 6-0 in their last six divisional playoff games, 37-16 in their last 53 home games, 1-4 in their last five playoff games, and 36-15 in Sabathia’s last 51 home starts. Detroit is 5-0 in their last five road games against a team with a winning record, 12-4 in their last 16 road games, 39-16 in their last 55 games overall, and 6-2 in Verlander’s last eight road starts against a team with a winning record. Detroit has won four of the last five meetings of these two and are 1-4 in Verlander’s last five starts against New York.
With two of the best pitchers in the game going runs are going to be scarce so even with the total set low at seven, this one still stays under. Take the under 7 here.