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MLB Preview Yankees at Red Sox

April 21, 2007

MLB Baseball - N.Y. Yankees at Boston Red Sox (-156, 10.5) 3:55 PM EST

Alex Rodriguez of the YankeesOne good thing for Boston no matter what, they will not have to face a suddenly extremely confident Alex Rodriguez in the bottom of the 9th inning. The Yankees third sacker hit his second walk off 9th inning, two out, home run of the month against Cleveland this past Thursday.

With 10 home runs and 26 runs batted in coming into the series, A-Rod has made subtle adjustments that could take his already sterling career achievements into another level. Rodriguez lost around 10 pounds making him quicker, shortened his stride at the plate, meaning he can stay back better on the pitch and be less prone to swinging at bad pitches.

The other item he admitted that he and Derek Jeter are not really friends, thus possibly clearing his mind to do what he does best, attack the horsehide. His 10 home runs in New York’s first 14 games set an American League record. He will face Josh Beckett who is off to 3-0 start.
 
Beckett after giving up 36 home runs last season has been using more off-speed pitches with far greater effectiveness. This will be a big key trying to keep baseball’s most explosive offense off balance.

Speculation at most team websites has risen New York will activate Jeff Karstens who has been on the disabled list with right elbow tendonitis for a Game 2 start. Karstens fastball is strictly discount store material, but his curve and change has the Meineke touch, making him effective.

The Yankee bullpen has only allowed 34 hits in sixty innings and could be the difference maker in the middle game of the set. Beckett thanks to run support is 2-2 against the Bronx Bombers, however his gargantuan 9.45 ERA tells a more compelling story.

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