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New York Yankees vs. Boston Red Sox: James Paxton vs. Chris Sale

It’s the clash of the paper tigers as the limping Yankees host the underwhelming defending champs for the first time this season.

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MLB: Baltimore Orioles at New York Yankees Gregory J. Fisher-USA TODAY Sports

The first two weeks of the season have not been kind to either of the New York Yankees or the Boston Red Sox, as the two juggernauts who met in the ALDS last season have stumbled out of the gate. Both teams look to use this brief, two-game set in the Bronx as a launchpad out of their respective early-season holes.

James Paxton (1-2, 6.00 ERA, 4.41 FIP) will seek to rebound from a poor outing versus the Houston Astros, in which he gave up five runs on eight hits (two home runs) in only four innings, striking out five and walking three; he later revealed that he was tipping his pitches. Opposing him is Red Sox ace and long-time Yankees menace Chris Sale (0-3, 9.00 ERA, 7.29 FIP). Sale’s typically-dominant stuff has been lacking so far this season — his fastball has only averaged about 91 MPH, down from 95 last season — and the results have shown it.

The Yankees today will be trotting out a fierce lineup with...uh...(checks notes)...Gio Urshela batting sixth.

Get well soon, Stanton. And Miggy. And Gary. And Didi. At this point, even Jacoby Ellsbury might be a sight for sore eyes.

Meanwhile, Boston will counter with a lineup that, despite strong starts from Xander Bogaerts, Mitch Moreland, and J.D. Martinez, has not lived up to its lofty expectations.

You’ll be able to catch tonight’s game on WPIX or the MLB Network (out-of-market only), listen to it on the WFAN 660/101.9 FM or WADO 1280, or stream it on First pitch is expected at 6:35 PM EDT.

Let’s Go Yankees!