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James Paxton looked like an ace in his first month in pinstripes before his knee caused him to miss most of May. Since then, he’s been up-and-down before closing out the first half with an 11-strikeout game against the Rays.

Now, the southpaw gets to face the very same Rays squad as the Yankees begin a crucial four-game set in the Bronx. The Bombers have a six-game lead in the division and have a chance to extend that lead with a series victory, or at least hold steady with a split.

The Yankees are putting out nearly their A lineup today, though Didi Gregorius gets the day off against a tough lefty in Blake Snell.

Here are the lineups

Rays (55-40)

  1. Travis d’Arnaud, C
  2. Tommy Pham, LF
  3. Michael Brosseau, 3B
  4. Yandy Diaz, 1B
  5. Avisail Garcia, DH
  6. Kevin Kiermaier, CF
  7. Guillermo Heredia, LF
  8. Willy Adames, SS
  9. Joey Wendle, 2B

LHP Blake Snell

Yankees (59-32)

  1. DJ LeMahieu, 2B
  2. Aaron Judge, RF
  3. Luke Voit, DH
  4. Gary Sanchez, C
  5. Aaron Hicks, CF
  6. Edwin Encarnacion, 1B
  7. Gleyber Torres, SS
  8. Gio Urshela, 3B
  9. Brett Gardner, LF

LHP James Paxton

Notes

  • Luis Severino and Dellin Betances each made 25 throws from 60 feet on flat ground in outfield today. First step in the rehab. Hopefully, they’ll still be able to go Wednesday when they continue their throwing programs.
  • Giannis Antetokounmpo is at the Stadium today. One of the few people who makes CC Sabathia look small.
  • Rays starter Tyler Glasnow will be shut down for another two weeks. He hasn’t pitched since May and his return this season is looking more and more in doubt. Tough break for Tampa Bay.

Game is starting … now. Game is on YES. Gerry Davis will be the home plate umpire. Enjoy!