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Open Thread: Game 15 (New York Yankees at Oakland Athletics)

Quick question: If you looked at this series before the season started and tried to guess which team would go in with more wins, who would you have guessed? Bzzzzzt. Wrong.

Believe it or not, both teams have nine wins. The Yankees (9-3) send Javier Vazquez to the hill against Gio Gonzalez and the Athletics (9-5). Vazquez is currently the only Yankee starter to be winless, as he's been roughed up to the tune of 0-2 with a 9.82 ERA. Gio Gonzalez has fared far better, and is currently 1-0 with a much more palatable 3.38 ERA. Of course, Gonzalez's stuff has never been in question, with a devastating curveball that Torii Hunter called the "best left-handed curveball in the game". The story with Gio is, as always, if he can keep his focus and prevent things from spiraling out of control against the best offensive lineup in the majors. Best wishes to the guy, who's still dealing with news that a recent car accident put his girlfriend in the hospital.

Javier Vazquez, after a career year with Atlanta (2.87 ERA, 2.77 FIP, good for 2nd in the NL), signed a $34.5MM three year contract with the Yankees. He's failed to perform well as of yet, by any standard, but he claims he's discovered and fixed a timing problem with his delivery. He clearly has top-flight talent, so I wouldn't expect your average 9.82 ERA pitcher to step on the mound tonight.

Great news on the injury front, as 15-day DL'd 60-day DL'd lupus patients mildly injured Daric Barton, Cliff Pennington, and Mark Ellis are back in the starting lineup tonight. Additionally, Trevor Cahill was taken off the DL and optioned to AAA Sacramento. The Elmer's glue holding Eric Chavez's spine together has been replaced with duct tape, so I think we're all good.

First pitch is at 7:05 PM. The game will be televised on CSNCA+, as the main channel is showing Game 4 of the Sharks playoffs.


Lineup

New York Yankees @ Oakland Athletics

04/20/10 7:05 PM PDT

New York Yankees Oakland Athletics
Derek Jeter - SS Rajai Davis - CF
Nick Johnson - DH Daric Barton - 1B
Mark Teixeira - 1B Ryan Sweeney - RF
Alex Rodriguez - 3B Kevin Kouzmanoff - 3B
Robinson Cano - 2B Kurt Suzuki - C
Jorge Posada - C Eric Chavez - DH
Nick Swisher - RF Mark Ellis - 2B
Curtis Granderson - CF Travis Buck - LF
Brett Gardner - LF Cliff Pennington - SS