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Game 96: "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit."

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So says Aristotle, anyway. Joba Chamberlain (5-2, 4.05) must have been aware that, for many, the bloom has fallen from the rose, and last Sunday he performed like a guy who was pitching for his life. Good timing, Joba. And now a new wrinkle in his ever-ballooning debate pool enters the scene, with Brian Cashman casually throwing it out there that Joba MAYBE is only 40 innings away from reaching his predetermined season limit. Is that so, Bri...

Tonight the loose cannon (file that alongside "July 31 Deadline" in the "Greatest MLB Misnomers" bucket), goes against the Athletics' searing rookie Brett Anderson (5-7, 4.25) who becomes the latest pitcher to try and find the hole in New York's game. It gets tougher and tougher for the Yanks' opponents, since it seems that Mark Teixeira somehow improves with every at-bat, and Alex Rodriguez's value to the team (even when he goes 0-5) is more and more prominent.

What's more, the Yankees look confident. They don't flail about in jams, make rash baserunning decisions (cough, Nick Swisher, cough), jump on the first pitch, or otherwise implode. They'll need every ounce of that tenacity and mental fortitude tonight against Anderson, who pitches like a choppier Hughes with AJ's ability to claw out of trouble. While the Yanks did knock him around at their last meeting, Anderson took a perfecto into 7 in his last start. I'm not impressed, nor should the Yanks. I predict they tee off on the southpaw like he's serving up 60 mph Skybounces.


Lineup

Oakland Athletics @ New York Yankees

07/24/09 7:05 PM EDT

Oakland Athletics New York Yankees
Adam Kennedy - 3B Derek Jeter - SS
Orlando Cabrera - SS Johnny Damon - LF
Scott Hairston - LF Mark Teixeira - 1B
Jack Cust - DH Alex Rodriguez - 3B
Kurt Suzuki - C Jorge Posada - C
Ryan Sweeney - RF Hideki Matsui - DH
Daric Barton - 1B Robinson Cano - 2B
Mark Ellis - 2B Nick Swisher - RF
Eric Patterson - CF Melky Cabrera - CF