Preview: Yankees at Astros
The New York Yankees traditionally have their sights set on the playoffs by the time regular-season game No. 162 rolls around. This isn't one of those years, however, as all that's on the table for the visiting Yankees on Sunday is a potential three-game series sweep of the lowly Houston Astros. Andy Pettitte capped a stellar career by tossing his 26th complete game - in front of his hometown fans - as New York escaped with a 2-1 triumph on Saturday.
Mired in a franchise-high 14-game losing streak, Houston endured another exclamation point to its woeful season after catcher Matt Pagnozzi inadvertently spiked the ball into the ground to allow the eventual winning run to score. The Astros, who have mustered just 22 runs during their skid, became the third team since 1970 to record 110 losses in a season. With a win on Sunday, Houston can avoid matching the 2004 Arizona Diamondbacks, who finished their campaign with 111 setbacks.
TV: 2:10 p.m. ET, YES (New York), CSN (Houston)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Yankees LH David Huff (3-1, 6.06 ERA) vs. Astros LH Erik Bedard (4-12, 4.81)
Huff will make just his second start for the Yankees after allowing four runs in 3 2/3 innings in a no-decision versus Tampa Bay on Wednesday. The 29-year-old has permitted seven homers in his last five trips to the mound (19 1/3 innings). Huff owns a 1-0 mark away from home, yielding a 0.62 WHIP while limiting the opposition to a .108 batting average.
Bedard was battered for the second straight outing, yielding six runs on eight hits in five innings en route to a 9-2 loss to Cleveland last Sunday. The 34-year-old Ontario native owns a 4-5 mark versus New York, but has permitted 28 walks in 70 2/3 innings. Bedard has pitched well at home, posting a 3-3 mark with a 3.36 ERA while limiting his adversaries to a .221 batting average.
1. All-time saves leader Mariano Rivera revealed on Saturday that he will not play again. "I'm done, guys. I'm done," he said. "I gave everything that I have."
2. Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez is also done playing on the field this season. The slugger admitted that he will turn his attention to the appeal process of his 211-game suspension, which will begin on Monday at Major League Baseball's offices in New York.
3. Houston 2B Jose Altuve has collected multiple hits in three of his last four games.
PREDICTION: Yankees 3, Astros 2