October 16, 2012
ALCS Game Three Preview: Yankees vs. Tigers
There’s being down 2-0 after two home games in a best-of-seven series, and then there’s being down 2-0 after two home games in a best-of-seven series with the reigning Cy Young winner and MVP on the mound against you in Game Three. That’s the scenario the Yankees are facing. Do they stand a chance? Here are the PECOTA odds and projected starting lineups for Game Three:
Projected Starting Lineups
It should come as no surprise that PECOTA expects the Tigers to win behind their ace and push the Yankees to the brink of elimination. They will, after all, be sending Verlander to the mound at Comerica Park, where the righty amassed a 1.65 ERA over 15 regular-season starts and held the Athletics to one run in seven innings in the Division Series opener. But the model does give Joe Girardi’s team a fair shot to spring the upset, staying—perhaps foolishly—bullish on New York’s big-name offense and comfortable with Hughes’ ability to hold his own against Detroit’s.
Verlander is no stranger to the Yankees; he faced them three times during the regular season, watching the Tigers lose the first two of those matchups, and then exacting revenge with a season-high 14 strikeouts over eight innings on Aug. 6. Here’s Verlander’s pitch chart from that dominant outing: