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New York Yankees vs. Los Angeles Angels: Jordan Montgomery vs. Noah Syndergaard

Will today be the day that hard-luck Jordan Montgomery gets his elusive first win?

MLB: Baltimore Orioles at New York Yankees Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

For the first time in forever, the Yankees had a scheduled off-day yesterday, their first since the early days of May. Thanks to the Rays’ loss to the Texas Rangers, it was nevertheless a productive day for the Bombers, as they added half a game to their lead in the AL East. It is far too early to celebrate the team’s five-game lead in the division, however, nor is there any time to do so. The Yankees begin a three-game set with the Los Angeles Angels tonight.

Jordan Montgomery (0-1, 3.30 ERA, 3.72 FIP) gets the ball for the Yankees. Despite his 114 ERA+ and 0.7 fWAR (tied for 53rd among pitchers with at least 40 innings), the lefty is still seeking his first win of the season, courtesy of a lack of run support — the Yankees have scored three or fewer runs in five of his nine starts — and bullpen shenanigans. He comes to the mound on the heels of back-to-back outings against the Orioles in which he allowed 5 runs across 11 innings of work, striking out eight and allowing no walks.

Opposing Monty will be former Mets pitcher Noah Syndergaard (4-2, 3.08 ERA, 3.53 FIP). The 29-year-old right-hander has been a major find for the Angels, allowing just three runs or fewer in six of his seven starts so far this season. The one exception was the definition of a clunker, as he surrendered six runs (four earned) on four hits in just two-thirds of an inning against the Texas Rangers on May 16th. Thor followed that up, however, with his most dominant performance of the young season, an eight-inning, four-hit masterpiece (also against the Rangers). Here’s hoping he’s a been more of the former rather than the latter tonight.

The Yankees will be sending out a lineup that can be best described as, uh, meh. The top of the order, gives us some confidence, with Aaron Judge and Gleyber Torres, both hitting well of late, slotted in at second and fourth, respectively, while DJ LeMahieu and Anthony Rizzo are both capable of getting the job done despite recent slumps. Outside of them, though, the lineup is brutal — Miguel Andújar, who has a 77 OPS+ in just 28 plate appearances, and catcher Jose Trevino (84 OPS+) are probably the two hitters I have the most confidence in after the top four. At least Aaron Hicks is on the bench to start.

That’s a big yikes. Fingers crossed for swift returns from Giancarlo Stanton and Josh Donaldson; the lineup just doesn’t look the same without them.

How to watch

Location: Yankee Stadium — Bronx, NY

First pitch: 7:05 pm ET

TV broadcast: YES, TBS

Radio broadcast: WFAN 660/101.9, WADO 1380

Online stream: MLB.tv

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