Series: Game 2 of 4

NY Yankees leads 2-0 (as of 7/4)

Game 1: Thursday, July 3
NY Yankees7Final
Game 2: Friday, July 4
NY Yankees6Final
Game 3: Saturday, July 5
NY Yankees1Final
in 11
Game 4: Sunday, July 6
NY Yankees9Final

Yankees 6

(43-42, 25-19 away)

Twins 5

(38-47, 20-21 home)

    Coverage:  ESPN2/WatchESPN

    3:00 PM ET, July 4, 2014

    Target Field, Minneapolis, Minnesota 

    123456789 R H E
    NYY 330000000 6 10 0
    MIN 112000010 5 11 0

    W: D. Huff (2-0)

    L: K. Gibson (7-7)

    S: D. Robertson (20)

    Yankees-Twins Preview


    The New York Yankees probably wish they could visit the Minnesota Twins every time they fall into an offensive funk.

    The Yankees look to move back above .500 and continue their road dominance of the last-place Twins on Friday in the second of a four-game set.

    New York (42-42) came into this series batting .223 overall and .141 with runners in scoring position while averaging 3.1 runs over a 2-9 stretch. The Yankees scored 13 runs during a five-game home slide prior to this 11-game trip leading into the All-Star break.

    So far, a change of venue has worked for the Yankees, but playing at Minnesota in particular seems to be the key.

    New York pounded the Twins (38-46) again Thursday, collecting 10 hits with two homers while going 3 for 4 with runners in scoring position -- driving in six -- in a 7-4 victory.

    "We have to find a way to score more runs. There's no doubt about that. We played very poor at home," said designated hitter Carlos Beltran, who hit a three-run homer.

    Scoring hasn't been a problem for the Yankees in Minnesota, where they've won 15 of their past 18 while hitting .283 with 24 homers and 5.7 runs per game.

    They've won six straight at Target Field while scoring 44 runs. New York last won seven straight in Minneapolis from 2002-03 at the Metrodome.

    Another strong performance from 27-year-old Zelous Wheeler could help New York match that run. He connected for a solo homer for one of his two hits in a stirring major league debut Thursday after spending nearly eight years in the minors.

    "It felt great. I've been waiting for this moment for a long time, and hopefully I can take advantage of it," said Wheeler, who replaced a struggling Yangervis Solarte at third base after he was demoted to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Wednesday.

    The Twins have dropped eight of 10 and will turn to Kyle Gibson (7-6, 3.77 ERA) to try quieting the Yankees, but he's allowed 11 runs over 10 1/3 innings while splitting his first two career meetings with them.

    The right-hander was touched for eight runs and 11 hits before being pulled with one out in the sixth of a 9-5 home loss last July 4th.

    Gibson, though, is 4-1 with a 1.54 ERA in six home starts, and he's 2-0 with a 0.45 ERA over his last three, tossing 15 consecutive scoreless innings.

    Each of his last four starts, however, have come on the road, and he went 2-1 with a 3.38 ERA after allowing two runs in eight innings of Sunday's 3-2 win at Texas.

    "All I did was try to give my team a chance to win and turn things around," Gibson said of stopping Minnesota's five-game slide.

    New York will counter with Chase Whitley (3-2, 4.70), who has lost back-to-back starts by surrendering 13 runs and 19 hits in 7 1/3 innings after winning three straight behind a 2.75 ERA.

    Perhaps facing the Twins can get the rookie right-hander untracked. He allowed one run with six strikeouts in five innings but did not get a decision in a 7-2 home win over Minnesota on June 1.

    This time he'll have to contend with Chris Parmelee, who is hitting .440 during a 13-game hitting streak after getting an RBI double Thursday.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Gameday Matchup

     New YorkMinnesota
    Current StreakW1L1
    Last 106-45-5

    Pitching Matchup

    New YorkMinnesota
    C. Whitley
    4-3, 5.23 ERA

    Last Game:
    9/27 at BOS
    2.0 IP, 0 ER
    Dec = ND
    K. Gibson
    13-12, 4.47 ERA

    Last Game:
    9/28 at DET
    7.1 IP, 3 ER
    Dec = Loss

    Gameday Lineups

    NO.New YorkMinnesota
    1. B. Gardner, LF B. Dozier, 2B
    2. B. Roberts, 2B K. Suzuki, C
    3. J. Ellsbury, CF C. Parmelee, 1B
    4. M. Teixeira, 1B K. Morales, 1B
    5. C. Beltran, DH O. Arcia, RF
    6. I. Suzuki, RF T. Plouffe, 3B
    7. F. Cervelli, C C. Colabello, DH
    8. K. Johnson, 3B E. Escobar, SS
    9. B. Ryan, SS S. Fuld, CF

    Research Notes

    From Elias: Brian Roberts has four extra-base hits for the Yankees so far today (three doubles and a triple). Roberts is the first Yankee with at least four extra-base hits in a game since Alex Rodriguez had four against the Devil Rays in 2005. Roberts is just the fourth Yankee to have four extra-base hits in a game in the last 40 years, and 16th in Yankee history. No Yankee has ever had 5 extra-base hits in a game.
    Brian Dozier's HR in the bottom of the 1st inning Friday against the Yankees was his 7th career leadoff HR and 4th this season.

    ESPN Stats & Information