Brace yourselves: 12 games vs the New Boston Red Yankees

Miggi's back in the lineup, but will it be enough? (Photo by J. Meric/Getty Images)

We've known about it since before the season started and it begins tonight. Three games @ Boston, three games vs New York, three games vs Boston, three games @ New York. Thirteen days, twelves games. How many losses? Based on the current rotations of the three teams and their respective schedules, I've determined that these are the preliminary pitching match ups for the four series:

@ Boston

vs. New York

4/23 Guthrie vs Lester
4/24 Matusz vs Lackey
4/25 Hernandez vs Wakefield

4/27 Millwood vs Hughes
4/28 Guthrie vs Sabathia
4/29 Matusz vs Burnett

vs. Boston

@ New York

4/30 Hernandez vs Lackey
5/1 TBD vs Matsuzaka
5/2 Millwood vs Beckett

5/3 Guthrie vs Sabathia
5/4 Matusz vs Burnett
5/5 Hernandez vs Pettitte

Now obviously none of these games will be a cake walk, at least not going in. But if I'm looking for a silver lining, I see a few. The Yankees are a much better hitting team than the Red Sox, so I like that Matusz is pitching in both of those series. Given the way that Guthrie has pitched so far this year, I feel the same way about him (although he gets the short straw by matching up with Sabathia in both series). It kind of stinks that we don't get to see Javier Vazquez, currently the Yankees worst pitcher, but it's nice that the O's only have to face Pettitte once. I know that CC Sabathia is a better pitcher than Andy Pettitte, but I almost feel more confident against him considering Pettitte's career vs the Orioles.

read the rest below the jump...

As for the Red Sox, Jon Lester has been terrible so far but that really doesn't mean anything to me. I know he'll get better eventually and he simply owns the Orioles. It's nice that we don't have to see him or Josh Beckett twice. If the O's can manage to learn some plate discipline by May 1st they could have a good game against Matuszaka; that will be his first start back from the disabled list. And just as I'm happy that Matusz will face the Yankees twice, I also think it's a good thing that it'll be Hernandez vs the Red Sox twice. Right at this moment he's the weakest part of the rotation (even though he's been a perfectly good back of the rotation pitcher this year) so I'd rather see him matched up against the Red Sox lineup than the Yankees.

The real question, and the one that's scarier to talk about, is that of the hitting. Miguel Tejada will be back in the lineup beginning tonight, which will hopefully give the team a boost. Nick Markakis looked very good against Felix Hernandez on Wednesday, so we can hope he's getting it together. The fact that those two things are the two things I can point to as hope for the lineup is pretty depressing, though. Beyond that it's just hoping the rest of the team will begin to turn it around. I miss Brian Roberts.

I've been trying to decide what I think would be a successful record over this stretch. I'd be quite happy with 5-7. I could even not be too miserable at 4-8, which I'm almost embarrassed to admit. How many games do I THINK they'll win? You know, I'll go with 5. I don't know why. To win 5 they'd have to win at least one series, and they haven't managed that yet this year. But things have to start leveling out eventually; why not now?

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