Oct 18, 2010, 11:00 PM EDT
Photo courtesy New York Yankees
The Yankees have to beat Cliff Lee or else fall behind 2-1 to the Rangers.
The Rangers are basically right where they wanted to be entering Game 3 of the ALCS: Tied at one game apiece, with ace Cliff Lee on the mound tonight at Yankee Stadium. That said, this is basically must-win territory for Texas, which can't afford to lose a game started by Lee and realistically expect to still win the series.
If anything, the Yankees should be loose tonight. No one expects them to topple Lee, so there's no pressure. Which is a dangerous position to be in. These guys aren't chopped liver, you know, and they're sending a pretty good left-hander to the mound themselves in Andy Pettitte. If Pettitte can turn in another strong performance like he did in the ALDS against the Twins, and if they can scrap together a few runs against Lee, the Yankees could find themselves in the catbird seat by night's end.
This was the reason the Rangers went out and got Lee as a hired gun over the summer (denying the Yankees his services, by the way). Tonight, we find out if he was worth it. Should be fun…
SS Elvis Andrus
3B Michael Young
CF Josh Hamilton
DH Vladimir Guerrero
COUNTDOWN TO OPENING DAY
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