Monday, July 21, 2014

Three games, three wins in the books for the Yankees to open up the second half of the season. After all they have been through this season, the Yanks are amazingly just three games back of the AL East leading Baltimore Orioles, who just lost two of their three games in Oakland over the weekend.

The second half of the Yankees' season could not have gotten off to a much better start, with all three starters so far having delivered quality starts of at least six innings. And even better, Jacoby Ellsbury (6-for-12), Carlos Beltran (4-for-11) and Brian McCann (4-for-13) all had a good weekend against Cincinnati, sparking hope that is life after all in the lineup that produced very little during the first half.

The Yankees will now hope to continue this hot start to the second half against the Texas Rangers, who dropped two of three to the Blue Jays in Toronto over the weekend, and lost eight straight and 22 of 25 heading into the All-Star break.

Tonight's lineup against Texas:

LF Brett Gardner
SS Derek Jeter
CF Jacoby Ellsbury
DH Carlos Beltran
1B Kelly Johnson
2B Brian Roberts
RF Ichiro Suzuki
C Francisco Cervelli
3B Zelous Wheeler

* Mark Teixeira will be out of the lineup for the next 3-4 days with a mild lower lat strain, Joe Girardi told reporters. As of now, Teixeira will not be headed to the disabled list. He went 0-for-12 over the weekend against the Reds.

Pitching matchup preview:

Shane Greene will look to continue his perfect run in the Yankees' rotation tonight when he takes the mound against an injury-riddled Rangers lineup. Greene, who has combined to allow just two runs over 13 1/3 innings while carrying a no-hitter through 4 2/3 innings in each of his first two starts, enters the game 2-0 with a 1.32 ERA.

In his last start, against the Baltimore Orioles on the Saturday before the All-Star break, Greene tossed 7 1/3 innings of shutout ball, while striking out nine.

Greene and the Yankees will be going up against Rangers right-hander Miles Mikolas (0-2, 10.05 ERA), who will make his fourth start of the season on Monday night. Mikolas gave up five runs (four earned) in 5 2/3 innings against the Angels.


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