Series: Game 4 of 4

NY Yankees won 3-1

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 2

(78-77, 37-44 away)

Yankees 5

(80-75, 41-36 home)

    Coverage:  YES

    1:05 PM ET, September 21, 2014

    Yankee Stadium, New York, New York 

    123456789 R H E
    TOR 100000010 2 7 0
    NYY 10001030 - 5 8 0

    W: M. Tanaka (13-4)

    L: D. Hutchison (10-13)

    S: D. Robertson (38)

    Blue Jays-Yankees Preview

    Masahiro Tanaka is returning to the mound for a test run with the New York Yankees.

    He'll start for the first time since July 8 on Sunday in the finale of a four-game home series against the Toronto Blue Jays.

    Tanaka (12-4, 2.51 ERA) has been out for 2 1/2 months because of a partial tear in his right elbow. The Yankees want him to pitch twice before the season ends to determine if he can avoid Tommy John surgery, which would sideline him for 2015.

    The Japanese ace believes his elbow is strong enough to avoid surgery.

    "I think so, if I'm able to go out there and have a strong outing," Tanaka said through an interpreter. "I feel it would give some good confidence."

    Tanaka, who will be limited to between 70 to 75 pitches, is 2-0 with a 2.08 ERA in two starts against Toronto.

    "The big thing is that he gets out of this healthy for us, I mean that's the big thing," manager Joe Girardi said. "And that he feels good about it and that he feels good about making another start. For me, that's the most important thing but it might give us a decent idea of what we're gonna have next year."

    Tanaka went 5-0 with a 1.86 ERA in his first seven outings in the Bronx before going 0-2 with a 2.81 ERA in his next two. He has held Jose Bautista hitless in six at-bats while Edwin Encarnacion is 3 for 5 against him with a double.

    The Yankees will be without center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury, who strained his right hamstring in Friday's 5-3 win and could be out for the season's last week.

    "Obviously we will give him a few days off and see where he's at," Girardi said. "It's not what you want but we have to deal with it."

    New York (79-75) had its three-game win streak snapped with a 6-3 loss Saturday.

    Bautista homered, reached base all five times and matched a career high by scoring four runs. He has gone deep eight times against the Yankees, with seven in the last nine meetings.

    "I think it's a good performance that obviously helps in meaningful games in September," Bautista said.

    Toronto (78-76) played without slugger Adam Lind, who is having back problems. John Mayberry Jr. went 0 for 3 with a sacrifice fly in his place.

    The Blue Jays have won three of their last five at Yankee Stadium after losing 17 straight there.

    New York's Brett Gardner ended a career-worst 0-for-27 slump with two hits Saturday.

    Blue Jays starter Drew Hutchison (10-12, 4.51) is on the upswing against the Yankees heading into his sixth and final 2014 outing versus them. He went 0-3 with a 9.22 ERA in the first three before going 2-0 with a 1.32 ERA in the next two.

    The right-hander gave up six runs in 6 1/3 innings in Tuesday's 8-2 defeat at Baltimore.

    His presence figures to be a boost for Derek Jeter, playing his final weekend home game. Jeter is 6 for 14 off Hutchison this year and 7 for 17 overall after an 0-for-28 skid.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Gameday Matchup

     TorontoNew York
    Current StreakL1W1
    Last 106-46-4

    Pitching Matchup

    TorontoNew York
    D. Hutchison
    11-13, 4.48 ERA

    Last Game:
    9/26 vs BAL
    5.0 IP, 2 ER
    Dec = Win
    M. Tanaka
    13-5, 2.77 ERA

    Last Game:
    9/27 at BOS
    1.2 IP, 5 ER
    Dec = Loss

    Gameday Lineups

    NO.TorontoNew York
    1. J. Reyes, SS B. Gardner, CF
    2. J. Bautista, RF D. Jeter, DH
    3. E. Encarnacion, DH B. McCann, C
    4. D. Navarro, C C. Young, LF
    5. D. Johnson, 1B C. Headley, 3B
    6. M. Kawasaki, 3B F. Cervelli, 1B
    7. D. Pompey, LF S. Drew, 2B
    8. R. Goins, 2B I. Suzuki, RF
    9. A. Gose, CF B. Ryan, SS

    Research Notes

    Derek Jeter (NYY): double in 7th inning; 1st time with a double in back-to-back games since Aug. 19-20, 2012.
    Brian McCann (NYY): HR (21); 17 of 21 HR this season have come at home. 19 of his 21 HR have now been hit to right field.
    - Posted his 2nd-worst swing-and-miss rate in a start - 18.8%, or 6 misses in 32 swings. - Fewest splitters thrown in a start (15); 4th-lowest splitter usage rate (21.4% of pitches), and lowest since May 25 - 42% of the pitches batters took were called strikes, his second-highest called strike rate in a start. - Threw nearly 66% of his pitches 'away' from batters, his 2nd-highest rate in a start this season (67% on May 31). - 89.7 average velocity (mph) on fastball/sinker, 2nd-lowest in a start this year.

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