I know for many of you, that's an easy question. The Yankees have haunted this Rangers organization in all of their postseason trips (see 1996, 1998 and 1999). But with the AL East clearly up in the air (the Rays now lead by 1/2 game), Michael Lynch of ESPN Stats & Information was kind enough to provide some numbers on both the Yankees and Rays and how the Rangers might stack up against the likely starting pitchers.
* CC Sabathia: 1-0 with 1.50 ERA in one start vs. Rangers this season. Went six innings and struck out nine in a rain-shortened game in April. The Rangers hitters got three hits in 20 at-bats against him.
* Andy Pettitte: 1-0 with 2.25 ERA in one start vs. Rangers this season. He went eight innings and struck out four. Rangers hitters got 4 hits in 26 AB against him
* Phil Hughes: Pitched just one inning (in relief) against Rangers this season. However, in his career, he is 2-0 in his career vs Rangers with a 0.00 ERA. He’s allowed just three hits in 47 AB vs. Rangers (.064 BA)
* Yankees went with 3-man rotation last postseason, but AJ Burnett was 1-0 with 2.50 ERA in three starts vs Rangers this season.
* David Price: 0-0 with 3.00 ERA in one start vs. Rangers this season. Texas hitters got five hits in 20 AB against him.
* Matt Garza: 2-0 with 2.84 ERA in two starts vs Rangers this season. Rangers hitters got 11 hits in 48 AB against him.
* Jeff Niemann: Has pitched three innings in career vs Rangers (all in relief in 2009) and allowed three ER in three innings pitched. Rangers got six hits in 15 AB against him.
* James Shields: 1-1, 2.57 ERA in two starts vs Rangers this season. Rangers got 14 hits in 55 AB against him.
Other notes of interest:
* Rangers are 4-4 vs Yankees this season and 2-4 vs Rays.
Combined numbers as starters this season:
Lewis/Wilson/Lee (with Rangers): 3.71 ERA, 6.5 IP
Sabathia/Hughes/Pettite: 3.45 ERA, 6.5 IP
Price/Garza/Shields: 3.86 ERA, 6.4 IP
So which team do you want to play: Yankees or Rays?