Series: Game 1 of 3

Series starts Tue 8/29

Game 1: Tuesday, August 29
NY Yankees
Game 1: Wednesday, August 30
NY Yankees2
Game 2: Wednesday, August 30
NY Yankees3
Game 3: Thursday, August 31
NY Yankees6

7:05 PM ET, August 29, 2006

Yankee Stadium, Bronx, New York 

Wang, Robertson duel in battle of division leaders

Detroit (82-49) at NY Yankees (77-52) 7:05 pm EDT

BRONX, New York (Ticker) - With the biggest cushion among American League division leaders, the New York Yankees will have their hottest pitcher on the mound for another key series opener.

Looking to tie Toronto's Roy Halladay for the major league lead in wins, Chien-Ming Wang gets the ball Tuesday when the Yankees host the first of three games against the AL Central Division-leading Detroit Tigers.

Thanks in large part to a five-game sweep of Boston earlier this month, the Yankees have built a seven-game lead atop the AL East. The winning pitcher in the opener of that pivotal series at Fenway Park, Wang (15-5, 3.81 ERA) has gone 7-1 with a 3.06 ERA in his last nine starts.

Wang has been especially effective here in his brief career, going 14-4 with a 3.20 ERA in 24 lifetime appearances at Yankee Stadium. The 26-year-old righthander has a mark of 9-2 with 2.97 ERA in 14 home starts this year.

After posting a 1.35 ERA in winning both starts against the Tigers last season, Wang allowed five runs and eight hits in four innings of an eventual 7-6 loss at Detroit on June 1. Tigers lefthander Nate Robertson (11-10, 4.10) was roughed up the previous evening, allowing six runs and 10 hits in 8 2/3 innings of a 6-1 loss to the Yankees.

The outing against New York was among few exceptions in an otherwise stellar first three months for Robertson, who was 8-3 with a 3.14 ERA in 16 starts through June. In 10 outings since the beginning of July, however, Robertson has gone just 3-7 with a 5.50 ERA.

Despite Robertson not carrying his early success into the latter stages of the season, the Tigers have maintained the best record in the major leagues. Detroit, which holds a five-game lead over Minnesota in the Central, partially due to its major league-best 42-25 road mark.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Gameday Matchup

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