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The New York Yankees continue to lose key performers with injuries and find different ways to win games. The visiting Yankees are thriving from the adversity as they prepare to face eight-game winner Matt Moore and the Tampa Bay Rays on Saturday in the second of a three-game set. New York could get Mark Teixeira and Kevin Youkilis back soon, but lost outfielder Curtis Granderson indefinitely with a broken knuckle on his left pinky finger during the 9-4 win over the Rays on Friday.
Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez and Teixeira have yet to play and the Yankees still lead the American League East by one game. Lyle Overbay has filled in well for Teixeira, knocking in 27 runs. The Rays are five games out in the East as they continue to struggle on the mound with a 4.46 ERA, although Moore and Sunday’s starter Alex Cobb have been the exceptions.
TV: 4:10 p.m. ET, YES (New York), SunSports (Tampa)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Yankees LH Vidal Nuno (1-1, 1.13 ERA) vs. Rays LH Matt Moore (8-0, 2.29)
Nuno will make his second career start and his fourth appearance overall, moving CC Sabathia back to Sunday. The 25-year-old scattered three hits over five shutout innings in his only other start against Cleveland on May 13. Nuno threw three pitches and gave up a solo home run to Nate McLouth, taking the loss Tuesday at Baltimore.
Moore continues to shine, allowing one run over seven innings to beat Baltimore in his last start. The 23-year-old has surrendered two or fewer runs in seven of nine outings and opponents are batting .175 against him. Moore beat the Yankees on April 22, giving up one run and two hits in a season-high eight innings. The left-hander is 3-2 with 3.99 ERA against the Yankees. Robinson Cano is 4-for-9 with a homer against Moore.
1. Rays 3B Evan Longoria went 0-for-4 to see his career-best 16-game hitting streak come to an end on Friday. He batted .397 during the streak.
2. Yankees closer Mariano Rivera is one appearance from tying Dennis Eckersley (1,071) for fourth on the all-time list.
3. Moore and Cobb own a combined 13-2 record, while Tampa Bay’s other starters are 5-11.
PREDICTION: Yankees 4, Rays 3