Tonight's matchup: Brewers (Marcum) at Yankees (Burnett)

I'm kind of really glad that I had oodles of homework to do last night, because I got to miss most of the Bronx Massacre. Just how bad was last night's loss? It was the Brewers' worse loss of the season, run-wise. By losing by 10 runs last night, the Crew set a new season record for run differential in a loss. The previous record has been nine runs against Boston on the 19th and nine runs against the Reds on April 3rd.

And what makes baseball such a great sport you ask? Not four days yore the Crew had their biggest run differential in a win, beating the Twins 11-1. The greatest difference in a win before that game was their 9-0 win against the Phillies April 19th.

And now for something completely different.

Shaun Marcum (7-2, 2.95 ERA, 3.16 FIP) will try to get himself and the Brewers back in the win column tonight. Marcum has pitched a total of four innings and thrown 98 pitches over his last two starts while dealing with a left hip flexor strain. In his last start Marcum threw three innings against the Rays, giving up 2 ER on 2 H and 1 BB, with both runs scoring on a Kelly Shoppach homer. Things are looking a bit better this time around though, as Marcum will have no restrictions tonight and says the hip is now "a non-issue." It's a good thing his hip is a non-issue, because something tells me that with the overworked bullpen, it doesn't matter how good or bad he's pitching, he's probably going to be staying out there for a while.

And if last night is any indicator, there might be bad pitching. Much like Zack Greinke, Shaun Marcum does not have a very good record against the Yankees. In his career against the Bombers Marcum is 1-4 with a 6.55 ERA in 11 games (9 starts). Four Yankees have faced Marcum at least 10 times:

PA slashline
ALex Rodriguez 26 .250/.423/.600
Jorge Posada 20 .389/.450/1.111
Robinson Cano 15 .357/.400/.429
Nick Swisher 13 .167/.231/.417

Yankee mystery man A.J. Burnett (7-6, 4.15, 4.56 FIP) will lead the Pinstripers into battle tonight. Burnett has been alternating between wild and dominant, and sometimes both. He's walked 5 batters in a game 5 times this year. He's leading the league in wild pitches. All this is adding up to high pitch counts, and it's a treat when Burnett makes it into the seventh inning.

Despite all of this, Burnett has done a relatively decent enough job limiting the damage; he's allowed more than 3 runs only 5 times this season in 16 starts. So far this season, Burnett's ERA is looking significantly better than last, and his FIP is also slightly improved. This is do in large part to luck (.245 BABIP). His WHIP is down all the way from 1.512 to 1.264, mainly because he is giving up more than two fewer hits this year compared to last. Other than that, his peripherals this year are fairly similar to last year. In his career against the Brew Crew Burnett is 1-2 with a 6.39 ERA. Four Brewers have faced him at least 10 times.

PA slashline
Yuniesky Betancourt 19 .211/.211/.211
Craig Counsell 13 .273/.385/.455
Mark Kotsay 13 .364/.462/.545
Carlos Gomez 11 .111/.273/.111

Tonight's lineups:

Brewers Yankees
Rickie Weeks 2B Brett Gardner LF
Nyjer Morgan CF Curtis Granderson CF
Ryan Braun LF Mark Teixeira 1B
Prince Fielder 1B Alex Rodriguez 3B
Corey Hart RF Robinson Cano 2B
Mat Gamel DH Nick Swisher RF
Casey McGehee 3B Jorge Posada DH
Yuni Betancourt SS Russell Martin C
Jonathan Lucroy C Eduardo Nunez SS

In the bullpen...
Marco Estrada pitched 3 innings (62 pitches) yesterday.
Zach Braddock pitched 1  inning (21 pitches) yesterday.
LaTroy Hawkins pitched1 inning (14 pitches) yesterday.
Tim Dillard pitched 1 inning (19 pitches) yesterday.
Kameron Loe pitched 1 inning (14 pitches) Sunday,
John Axford pitched 1 inning (13 pitches) Sunday.

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