W2W4: Yankees at Orioles (Sept. 7)

Phil Hughes Stats To Watch

Hughes has lost two of his three starts against the Orioles this season, and not surprisingly the bugaboo was a pair of homers in each of those games.

Hughes is 4-1 with a 3.32 ERA in seven starts against the Orioles in which he didn't allow a home run. He's 1-3 with a 8.78 ERA in the six starts in which he has allowed at least one home run against them.

OriolesYankeesThursday's hero, Adam Jones has a history of struggles against Hughes. He's 6-for-31 against him, including 2-for-23 over the last three seasons.

Of the 21 times Hughes has gotten Jones out in that span, he has been most effective at finishing him off inside. Nine of the 23 outs came on pitches over the inner-third of the plate, or further inside on Jones.

How do you get Mark Reynolds out?

The current Orioles roster has nine home runs in 156 at-bats against Hughes. Reynolds is the only one with two. He's 3-for-9 in his career against Hughes.

Reynolds has eight home runs in his last seven games and three multi-homer games in his last four games against the Yankees.

How do you get him out?

The Yankees have actually done the right thing. They've attacked Reynolds' weakness on the outer-half of the plate. In his last four games against the Yankees, they've thrown him 66 pitches, 44 of which have been to the outer-half of the plate.

The problems are two-fold. One is that Reynolds has three hits against those pitches in this span (he's typically a sub-.200 hitter when an at-bat ends with that pitch) and is missing on a lower percentage of his swings (29 percent) than he usually does(40 percent season rate against outer-half).

The other: On pitches thrown to the inner-half, Reynolds has twice as many homers (four) as he does swings-and-misses (two) in those four games.

Playing the Binder

It will be interesting to see where Russell Martin hits in this lineup after his success in the No. 5 spot against Matt Moore on Wednesday.

Martin is 5-for-his-last-39 against left-handed pitching, but was 2-for-4 against Moore and reliever Jake McGee.

Martin is 1-for-6, albeit with two deep flyouts and a reached-on-error vs. Chen in his career.

Elias Sports Bureau Stats of the Day

In case you missed it, Alex Rodriguez played in his 2,500th game last night. He and Derek Jeter are the first teammates to have played at least 2,500 games in the majors since Barry Bonds and Omar Vizquel (2007 Giants).

Rodriguez, who hit his 299th home run as a Yankee on July 23, will likely become the sixth player hit 300 home runs for the club; he'll join Babe Ruth (659), Mickey Mantle (536), Lou Gehrig (493), Joe DiMaggio (361) and Yogi Berra (358). The Yankees are currently tied with the Braves and Red Sox for the most such players in history.