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Toronto Blue Jays vs. New York Yankees Preview and Predictions 09-17-2020

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On Tuesday, Luke Voit said the Bronx Bombers were back.

Voit made those comments after the Yankees hit six homers Tuesday and, after hitting seven homers Wednesday, New York goes for its season-high eighth straight win in the finale of a three-game series with the Toronto Blue Jays Thursday night at Yankee Stadium.

The Yankees (28-21) were 5-15 in a 20-game slide before getting a 7-2 win against Toronto in Buffalo on Sept. 9 and are outscoring opponents 61-13 in their run. The winning streak has elevated the Yankees to the fifth seed in the American League and within three games of the AL East-leading Tampa Bay Rays.

"There's a lot of uplifted spirits right now," Yankees outfielder Clint Frazier said. "Obviously, it was a tough stretch that we had whenever we lost however many consecutive games it was. It was just a matter of time before we did what we knew we were capable of and obviously we've got to continue to do that the last couple of games of the season."

It is the closest the Yankees have been to Tampa Bay since they dropped the first game of a doubleheader against the New York Mets on Aug. 28. The Yankees have 13 homers in this series and are coming off consecutive games with at least six homers for the first time in team history.

Kyle Higashioka hit three homers, DJ LeMahieu homered twice, Voit upped his major league-leading total to 19 and Frazier homered after moving to left field to accommodate Aaron Judge's return from a strained right calf.

"It's just exciting," Higashioka said. "We're going out there excited to play every night. We've been swinging it well and the pitching has been awesome."

During its second seven-game run of the season, the Yankees are batting .301 (69-for-229) with 21 homers.

New York also owns a 1.78 ERA during the streak after Gerrit Cole pitched seven innings of one-run ball.

Masahiro Tanaka (2-2, 3.16 ERA) will take the mound after allowing one run on three hits in five innings in the second game of Friday's doubleheader against the Baltimore Orioles.

Tanaka has allowed two runs or less in six of his eight starts so far and is 13-5 with a 2.87 ERA in 21 career starts against Toronto.

The Blue Jays (26-22) are 1 1/2 games behind the Yankees and also a half-game ahead of eighth-seeded Cleveland.

Toronto has been outscored 40-10 in its past three games with the Yankees. The Blue Jays have lost four of their past six games and are getting outscored 58-11 in the defeats.

Toronto is assured of losing its first series since dropping two of three at home to Tampa Bay Aug. 14-16. The Blue Jays were 7-11 after that series and then went 19-9 in the next 28 games before allowing at least six homers in consecutive games for the first time in team history.

"We won the last nine series, we won or tied every series, so it's bound to happen of course," Toronto manager Charlie Montoyo said. "We're trying to make the playoffs, we want to win every game but everybody knows that's just going to happen. We just haven't pitched good and they've swung the bats pretty good and they've pitched pretty good, that's how you lose two games."

The Blue Jays activated outfielder Teoscar Hernandez on Wednesday but he did not play. He could play Thursday after missing a little over a week with an oblique injury and Toronto is hoping to see the hitter who batted .308 with 14 homers and 27 RBIs before getting hurt.

Toronto also owns a 11.52 ERA in the last three games against the Yankees and hopes Chase Anderson (0-1, 5.81 ERA) can perform better than Taijuan Walker and Tanner Roark. Anderson is facing the Yankees for the first time and has allowed 10 runs in 6 2/3 innings over his last two starts.

--Field Level Media

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Key Players to Watch

Stadium

Yankee Stadium
Bronx, New York, USA.
Capacity: 52,325

Last Injuries

New York Yankees

  • Giancarlo Stanton

    Rest
    Ques Sun | questionable

    Stanton is not expected to be in Sunday's starting lineup versus the Marlins as he will be given the day off.

  • Ben Heller

    Bicep
    out for season | 45-day IL

    Heller is expected to miss the remainder of the season while on the 45-day injured list with a right biceps nerve injury.

  • Aaron Judge

    Rest
    Ques Thurs | questionable

    Judge is not expected to play Thursday against the Blue Jays due to a day of rest.

  • Gary Sanchez

    Rest
    Ques Thurs | questionable

    Sanchez is unlikely to be available against the Blue Jays on Thursday as he is to be rested.

  • Giancarlo Stanton

    Rest
    Ques Tues | questionable

    Stanton is not expected to play Tuesday against the Blue Jays due to a day of rest.

  • Gary Sanchez

    Rest
    Ques Tues | questionable

    Sanchez is unlikely to be available against the Blue Jays on Tuesday as he is to be rested.

  • Aroldis Chapman

    Suspension
    Prob Mon | probable

    Chapman has been suspended three games for throwing at an opponent. He is appealing the decision and will be allowed to play Monday against the Blue Jays.

  • James Paxton

    Forearm
    out for season | 45-day IL

    Paxton has been transitioned to the 45-day injured list with a Grade 1 flexor strain in his left forearm, and he is expected to miss the remainder of the season.

Toronto Blue Jays

  • Julian Merryweather

    Elbow
    Out indefinitely | 10-day IL

    Merrweather has hit the 10-day injured list with right elbow tendinitis, and there is no timetable for return.

  • Lourdes Gurriel Jr.

    Foot
    Prob Sun | probable

    Gurriel Jr. exited the previous game due to a left foot contusion, but he will suit up against the Orioles on Sunday.

  • Jordan Romano

    Finger
    Early Oct | 10-day IL

    Romano has popped up on the 10-day injured list with a right middle finger strain, and he is expected to be on the shelf until at least the start of October.

  • Rafael Dolis

    Knee
    Out indefinitely | out

    Dolis is out of commission with right knee discomfort, and there is no timetable for recovery.

  • Nate Pearson

    Elbow
    Prob Thurs | probable

    Pearson has been activated from the 10-day injured list after healing from a flexor strain in his right elbow. It is anticipated that he will be available out of the bullpen Thursday against the Yankees.

  • Travis Shaw

    Back
    Prob Wed | probable

    Shaw sat out the last game due to back spasms, but he is expected to line up against the Yankees on Wednesday.

  • Ken Giles

    Elbow
    out for season | 10-day IL

    Giles has been placed on the 10-day injured list due to Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. Team officials do not expect him to return this season.

  • Jacob Waguespack

    Back
    out for season | 10-day IL

    Waguespack will be on the 10-day injured list for the remainder of the season with a left-back strain.

new-york-yankees Stats 2020

Hitting Statistics
Player G GS AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI TB SB K CS Avg SP OBP
Player G GS AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI TB SB K CS Avg SP OBP
Pitching Statistics
Player G GS OP ST HBPA HA HRA IWA RA SFA SHA SBSA WA PT
Player G GS OP ST HBPA HA HRA IWA RA SFA SHA SBSA WA PT
Field Statistics
Player GP GS CI SABC SCBC FE OA PB
Player GP GS CI SABC SCBC FE OA PB