Texas Rangers (9-3) at New York Yankees (7-4) Preview

It’s an American League playoff rematch starting today. While the Rangers will look to crush the Yankees yet again and continue their success that they’ve shown so far this season, the Yankees will look to redeem themselves after their loss in the 2010 ALCS that no one thought they would lose.

Today kicks off the first game of a three-game series and will feature the “young guns” of the bunch – Matt Harrison, Derek Holland and Alexi Ogando. All three of these guys have done well this season so there is currently no worry whether or not they can pull it off against the Yankees.

Pitching matchups after the jump…

The Rangers start the series with LHP Matt Harrison on the mound. Harrison has won both of his pitched games this season – one against Boston and one against Baltimore. In both games he allowed just one run – five hits with Boston and two with Baltimore. He holds a 1.29 ERA for the season right now with 11 strike outs. Alex Rodriguez is 4-for-7, Derek Jeter is 1-for-7, Mark Teixeira is 1-for-4, Nick Swisher is 2-for-6, Curtis Granderson is 1-for-7, Robinson Cano is 1-for-6 and Brett Gardner has never faced Harrison.

The Yankees counter with RHP Ivan Nova. This 24-year-old rookie saw a quality start for his first outing against Minnesota where he allowed three runs on six hits over six innings. His next time out against the Red Sox, he allowed four runs on seven hits while throwing striking out three and walking the same over four 1/3 innings…despite his foul start, the Yankees still won that game. His ERA for the season is 6.10. Nova has never pitched against the Rangers although Adrian Beltre has faced the RHP and is 0-for-2.

This is what Brandon Webb, a Rangers pitcher who is currently out but seeing progress, says about the upcoming series at Yankee Stadium:

“They don’t look scared. They’re fearless and they attack hitters. No matter who it is, they’re not pitching around guys, except when the situation calls for it. They don’t care who is up there, they attack the zone with strikes and go deep in the games.”

“These guys are good.”

Let’s hope that the Rangers can find success against the Yankees…because out of most games, this series will be a true test for Texas. I’m sure it will definitely be a close game.

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