In terms of sizzle, the new-look Yankees can’t compete with the new-look Tigers.
Detroit made arguably the biggest power move in baseball at last Thursday’s trade deadline as it acquired lefty starter David Price from the Rays. The Yankees upgraded their infield by landing Martin Prado from Arizona and Stephen Drew from Boston, but their status as a “playoff hopeful” remains the same. Detroit’s status is firmly, “World Series or bust.”
The Yankees will see all three of the Tigers’ former Cy Young Award winners in the Bronx in succession this week as Max Scherzer (13-3, 3.27 ERA) will take the mound Monday, Price (11-8, 3.11 ERA) will make his Tigers debut Tuesday, and Justin Verlander (10-9, 4.66 ERA) will get the call on Wednesday.
Brandon McCarthy (6-10, 4.56 ERA), Hiroki Kuroda (7-7, 3.98 ERA), Chris Capuano (1-2, 4.50 ERA) and Shane Greene (2-1, 3.68 ERA) are scheduled to pitch for the Yankees in the four-game set. Rick Porcello (13-5, 3.18 ERA) is slated to work for Detroit in the series finale on Thursday.
Detroit is fresh off a sweep of the Rockies at home, a series in which it scored an average of 6.3 runs per game. It was a sign that the Tigers’ offense may be ready to produce big numbers, which would give Detroit something close to an unstoppable 1-2 punch at the tops and bottoms of early innings.
The Tigers had struggled prior to the Colorado series as they went just 5-9 coming out of the All-Star break.
Meanwhile the Yankees, 5.5 games back of the Orioles in the AL East as of Sunday afternoon, have played solid ball since the break. New York had a record of 9-6 since the Midsummer Classic prior to Sunday night’s series finale against the Red Sox in Boston.
Follow Metro Boston sports editor Matt Burke on Twitter: @BurkeMetroBOS