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Series Preview: Athletics vs Yankees

Since 2008 the Yankees have won 14 of 16 games against the Oakland Athletics, including two of three earlier this season. For Yankees fans, it is good news to see that the Yankees will start a three game series tonight against the Athletics in the Bronx.

The Pinstripes will hand the ball to Bartolo Colon in tonightโ€™s game hoping he can go at least six quality innings to set the team up for a win. Following Colon, will be C.C. Sabathia and Phil Hughes. Sabathia was decent in his last outing against the Twins giving up three earned runs on 10 hits through seven innings, picking up a win. Hughes was outstanding against Minnesota only giving up two hits and one run (on a home run) in 7.2 innings. Another strong start from Hughes could go a long way in the Yankees believing in their rotation for the playoffs with Sabathia, Hughes and a very impressive Ivan Nova (who we will see later in the week against Baltimore).

Oakland sends Brandon McCarthy (6-6, 3.74 ERA) to the mound tonight, followed by Trevor Cahill (9-12, 4.17ERA) and Rich Harden (4-2, 3.91 ERA). McCarthy is 5-1 in his last seven starts, and the team has gone 6-1 in those games. While it might seem McCarthy has been on a role of late, record-wise, his ERA has actually gone up in those starts. Cahill is 1-7 in his last 10 starts and the team has only won two of those games. He has given up 40 earned runs during those starts and saw his EAR jump from 3.09 to 4.17. Harden has been a middle of the road starter for the Aโ€™s and the Yankees provide a formidable opponent for all the Oakland starters, and relievers for that matter.

The Yankees bats look to take advantage of the Oakland A's pitchers in the three game series in the Bronx

Speaking of that Yankee line up, especially with the addition of Alex Rodriguez to the mix and I believe it is one of the best batting orders top to bottom. The Yankees are on top of almost every batting category: first in runs, first in home runs, first in RBI, fifth in batting average and first in stolen bases. Curtis Granderson is on a tear this season ranking first overall in runs, second in home runs and second in RBI, for the entire league. With Granderson clicking, Derek Jeter on fire after returning from the DL, Robinson Cano hitting over .350 in August, Mark Teixeira hitting meaningful home runs and the return of A-Rod, the Bombers look ready to launch into the post-season.

A series sweep of the Aโ€™s is not out of question for the Yankees to try to increase their one game lead over the Boston Red Sox in the American League East.


Justin McElrath

NYYUniverse.com Staff Writer

Follow me on Twitter @Justin_McElrath