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Looking Back and Looking Forward

One of his many home runs.
One of his many home runs.

The New York Yankees will play the Detroit Tigers in the 2011 ALDS. The Yankees lost to the Tigers in the 2006 ALDS three games to one, with the four starting pitchers for the Yankees that series being Chien Ming Wang, Mike Mussina, Randy Johnson, and Jaret Wright. This year will be a different look, as the Yankees will pitch CC Sabathia, Ivan Nova, Freddy Garcia, and probably Sabathia and Nova again, if necessary.

The Yankees lost the season series this year four to two, winning two out of three in the opening series of the season, then getting swept in a three game series in Detroit in May. Let's take a look at each game individually.

March 31st: Opening Day: 6-3 Yankees

The Tigers got on the board first thanks to a Jhonny Peralta sac fly. Following a Mark Teixeira two run home run, the Tigers scored a pair of runs. The Yankees pulled away in the seventh and eighth, scoring on a solo home run by Curtis Granderson, a sac fly by Derek Jeter, and an RBI single by Nick Swisher.

The Yankees only managed to get three hits off of Justin Verlander, but did score three runs off of the Tigers ace. The Tigers scored three runs, two earned, off of CC Sabathia. The Yankees bullpen pitched three perfect innings, while the Yankees lineup tagged Phil Coke for two runs, and Ryan Perry for one.

April 2nd: 2nd Game of the Season: 10-6 Yankees

The Yankees pounced on Tigers starter Brad Penny, scoring eight runs in just over four innings off of the veteran. A.J. Burnett failed to pitch a quality start, surrendering three runs in five innings of work. Mark Teixeira, Russell Martin, and Alex Rodriguez hit home runs for the Yankees. Luis Ayala gave up two runs in his first appearance with the Yankees.

April 3rd: 3rd Game of the Season: 10-7 Tigers

Phil Hughes struggled in his first start of the season, but Max Scherzer's struggles kept the Yankees in the game. Bartolo Colon gave up four runs in four innings in his first appearance with the Yankees. Mark Teixeira, Robinson Cano, and Jorge Posada (2) hit home runs for the Yankees.

The second series did not go so well for the Yankees.

May 3rd, 2011: Tigers take Game One: 4-2 Tigers

Brad Penny out pitched CC Sabathia, as the hefty lefty allowed four runs in seven innings, while Penny only allowed one run in six innings. Mark Teixeira homered again.

May 4th, 2011: Tigers Shut Out Yankees: 4-0 Tigers

Jhonny Peralta and Miguel Cabrera each knocked in a run, and Magglio Ordonez hit a two run shot to create the Tigers offense. The Yankees offense simply could not get anything done off of Max Scherzer, who pitched eight innings, giving up only four hits and zero runs. Freddy Garcia gave up four runs in seven innings for the Yankees.

May 5th, 2011: Tigers Sweep the Yankees: 6-3 Tigers

Brennan Boesch knocked in two runs, and an Eduardo Nunez throwing error sent in two more. Eric Chavez hit an RBI triple, but injured himself running the base paths. Burnett allowed five runs, but only two earned, in seven innings. Boone Logan allowed a run. Rick Porcello only surrendered two runs in seven innings.

Looking forward, these games don't mean much, but the specific players' stats vs. the other team do matter. Notice Mark Teixeira hit a few home runs, so he can be an X-factor to watch. Doug Fister was not on the Tigers when they faced the Yankees, but when he did pitch for the Mariners against the Yankees, he gave up three runs in seven innings in a Yankees win.