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Game 84: "First you take the field, then you take their spirit"--The Patriot

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After losing the 5th straight game to the Evil Empire, the Twins are sending RHP Anthony Swarzak (2-2, 3.90) to the mound in place of Glen Perkins, who has been scratched due to a fever. The rookie will make his first career start against the Yankees tonight, as the Twins hope for the best with how well he can fare against a lineup that's batting .302 in their last 13 games. I can't help but be reminded of the Narfle the Garthok scene in "Coneheads"...

What goes through the mind of a pitcher who waits and waits for the bottom of the order to provide a needed respite, but it never comes? Last night the Yankees' 7-8-9 batters combined for 7 hits and 6 RBIs, while ace CC Sabathia completely stifled the bats to 3 hits and 1 run. The one-two punch in the rotation of CC last night and RHP A.J. Burnett (7-4, 3.83) tonight means the Twins must try to rebound from yesterday's disaster against a beast who's 3-1 in his last 4 starts with an anemic 0.99 ERA.

The good news is that the Yankees are scary right now. The bad news is unseen pitchers scare the Yankees. Maybe it's New York's turn to hope for the best, as they look to leverage their burgeoning momentum into win #6 against the midwestern boys, and avoid being shut down by novelty pitching.

Does Perkins even have a fever or is Ron Gardenhire just being desperately shrewd?



Lineup

New York Yankees @ Minnesota Twins

07/08/09 8:10 PM EDT

New York Yankees Minnesota Twins
Derek Jeter - SS Denard Span - LF
Johnny Damon - LF Brendan Harris - SS
Mark Teixeira - 1B Joe Mauer - C
Alex Rodriguez - 3B Justin Morneau - 1B
Hideki Matsui - DH Michael Cuddyer - RF
Jorge Posada - C Jason Kubel - DH
Robinson Cano - 2B Joe Crede - 3B
Nick Swisher - RF Carlos Gomez - CF
Brett Gardner - CF Nick Punto - 2B