Series: Game 3 of 4

NY Yankees leads 2-1 (as of 9/20)

Game 1: Thursday, September 18
NY Yankees3
Game 2: Friday, September 19
NY Yankees5
Game 3: Saturday, September 20
NY Yankees3
Game 4: Sunday, September 21
NY Yankees5

Blue Jays 6

(78-76, 37-43 away)

Yankees 3

(79-75, 40-36 home)

    Coverage:  YES

    4:05 PM ET, September 20, 2014

    Yankee Stadium, New York, New York 

    123456789 R H E
    TOR 100003101 6 10 1
    NYY 001100001 3 11 1

    W: M. Stroman (11-6)

    L: C. Capuano (2-4)

    S: C. Janssen (24)

    Blue Jays-Yankees Preview


    Having to overtake at least three teams over their final 10 games in order to earn a playoff spot, it's looking more and more likely that the New York Yankees are going to miss the postseason in consecutive years for the first time in over two decades.

    Accomplishing that unlikely task could be much more difficult without Jacoby Ellsbury.

    The Yankees seek a fourth straight victory Saturday as they face starter Marcus Stroman and the reeling Toronto Blue Jays in the Bronx.

    New York (79-74) is tied with Cleveland and trails Seattle, Oakland and Kansas City in the wild-card standings and would need plenty of help to return to the playoffs after not qualifying last season.

    The Yankees haven't missed the postseason in back-to-back years since going from 1982-1993 without an appearance. They aren't giving up the fight yet, though, as Ellsbury homered, doubled and drove in three runs while Derek Jeter had two hits in Friday's 5-3 victory over Toronto.

    "End strong, see what happens," said Adam Warren, who picked up his sixth save.

    Ellsbury beat out a double play in the fourth inning but strained his right hamstring in the process. He stayed in for the rest of the inning but left in the top of the fifth.

    Manager Joe Girardi said there's a "distinct possibility" Ellsbury, who signed a seven-year, $153 million contract in the offseason, could be done for the season.

    New York hopes to overcome Ellsbury's absence as it faces Stroman (10-6, 3.80 ERA), who will get the start while appealing the six-game suspension he received for throwing a pitch over the head of Baltimore catcher Caleb Joseph in Monday's 5-2 loss.

    The ban stems from the potential that Stroman was retaliating for teammate Jose Reyes, who contended that Joseph tried to step on his hand while sliding into home plate earlier in the game.

    The right-hander maintains he wasn't trying to cause any problems.

    "Fastball that just kind of slipped out of my hand," Stroman said. "It's late in the game. I got two big strikeouts. I'm a little excited, and trying to get out of the inning. I know it's possibly my last hitter. Just trying to execute a fastball in."

    Stroman allowed five runs in six innings in that contest after winning his previous three starts with a 1.59 ERA. It's been an inconsistent six weeks for Stroman, who has allowed at least five runs four times while giving up two or fewer in the other four in that span.

    The rookie is 1-1 with a 2.31 ERA in two starts against the Yankees, most recently allowing one run and three hits in eight innings of an 8-3 victory June 23.

    Toronto (77-76) likely will need a solid performance out of Stroman as it looks to end a six-game losing streak that is its longest of the season. It has been outscored 33-15 in that stretch.

    Edwin Encarnacion hit a two-run homer in the first inning and Reyes had three hits Friday.

    The Blue Jays will look to bounce back against Chris Capuano, who has pitched well against them since joining the Yankees.

    Capuano (2-3, 4.55) is 1-2 with a 4.56 ERA in 10 starts since being acquired July 24. He's coming off his best outing after allowing two hits over six scoreless innings of New York's 1-0 loss to Tampa Bay on Monday.

    The left-hander has a 2.92 ERA in two starts against Toronto while with the Yankees, not picking up a decision in his first start July 26 and allowing three runs in 6 1/3 innings of a 6-3 win Aug. 29.

    New York has won 19 of 21 at home against Toronto.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Gameday Matchup

     TorontoNew York
    Current StreakL1W1
    Last 106-46-4

    Pitching Matchup

    TorontoNew York
    M. Stroman
    11-6, 3.65 ERA

    Last Game:
    9/26 vs BAL
    4.0 IP, 0 ER
    Dec = ND
    C. Capuano
    3-4, 4.35 ERA

    Last Game:
    9/26 at BOS
    6.2 IP, 0 ER
    Dec = Win

    Gameday Lineups

    NO.TorontoNew York
    1. J. Reyes, SS B. Gardner, CF
    2. J. Bautista, RF D. Jeter, SS
    3. E. Encarnacion, DH B. McCann, DH
    4. D. Navarro, C M. Teixeira, 1B
    5. D. Valencia, 3B C. Young, LF
    6. J. Mayberry Jr., 1B C. Headley, 3B
    7. D. Pompey, CF S. Drew, 2B
    8. S. Tolleson, 2B I. Suzuki, RF
    9. K. Pillar, LF F. Cervelli, C

    Research Notes

    Derek Jeter reached another milestone, passing Alex Rodriguez for 9th on MLB's all-time runs scored list with his run in the third inning, the 1,920th of his career.

    ESPN Stats & Information