After two unaesthetically pleasing wins that reminded us all that the win column thankfully doesn’t distinguish quality from pure quantity, the Yankees look for their third victory in a row and a series sweep this afternoon in the Motor City when they take on the Detroit Tigers. As far as games in April against non-division opponents go, today’s game carries some weight and there are a few things to keep our eyes on: As John Griffin noted yesterday, there are some legitimate questions about the Yankees' performance in day games, and as I discussed Tuesday, this is an important stretch of the schedule the Yankees are in right now. Today’s game has a more important feel to it than we might normally expect this early in the season.
To that end, the Yankees will send Jordan Montgomery to the mound for the matinee. The southpaw has become a remarkably consistent and effective pitcher for the team, posting a 112 ERA+, 3.66 FIP, and 16.3 K-BB percentage over 32 starts since the start of last season. With the ability to consistently get opposing hitters to leave the zone, he’s become a key pitcher on a staff that continues to impress. Monty will be making his third start of 2022 today, having looked a little sluggish against Boston on April 10th (in his defense, he did take a rocket comebacker off the knee) before bouncing back with five shutout innings in Baltimore last Friday.
Montgomery should enter today’s action with some confidence, as the Tigers have really struggled with the bats so far in 2022. They’ve plated only 33 runs in their 11 games, the fourth-worst R/G average in baseball, and have posted a .207/.302/.308 triple-slash line that makes one wonder “How did they score 11?” Montgomery will also try to avoid being on the wrong end of a historical moment, as Detroit’s Miguel Cabrera enters today’s action needing only one hit to reach the very exclusive 3,000 Hit Club.
The Tigers will counter Montgomery with old friend Michael Pineda. The former Yankee has always been consistent in the sense that he throws a lot of four-seam fastballs, he issues very few free passes, and he’s injured frequently. The Tigers signed Pineda as a free agent in March and he threw only 6.1 innings in the spring, so there certainly are questions to be answered by the 33-year-old despite his track record of consistency as he makes his first start of 2022.
Joey Gallo is back in the lineup today to try to get in a groove against Pineda, and Marwin Gonzalez and Jose Trevino will see action as Josh Donaldson and Kyle Higashioka get the day off.
How to watch:
Location: Comerica Park — Detroit, MI
First pitch: 1:10 pm EDT
TV broadcast: YES Network, Bally Sports Detroit, MLB Network
Radio Broadcast: 660 AM/101.9 FM WFAN, 1280 AMWADO, WXYT FM (DET)
Online stream: MLB.tv