Fresh off ending a 1-for-21 slide at the plate, Rodriguez will try to keep his newfound momentum going when the Yankees play the middle game of their series with the visiting Detroit Tigers.
Rodriguez, who will start at third base for the American League in next week’s All-Star game in Houston, had struggled over his previous nine games, hitting .139 (5-for-36) with no home runs and just four RBIs.
But on Monday in the series opener, Rodriguez went 2-for-3 with a three-run home run as the Yankees distanced themselves from their three losses to the Mets over the weekend by ripping the Tigers 10-3.
“I think we were a little deflated for those three games after the Boston series,” Rodriguez said.
Rodriguez’s fast start to this series shouldn’t come as a big surprise. Though he was struggling, Rodriguez is batting .351 with 22 home runs and 78 RBIs in 79 career games against Detroit.
Mike Mussina, who is coming off his first loss since April 22, will start Tuesday for the Yankees after asking manager Joe Torre if he could move up one day in the rotation.
By going Tuesday, the 35-year-old right-hander can pitch the final game before the All-Star break, Sunday against Tampa Bay.
The move should help the Yankees considering Mussina has owned the Tigers in his career, going 15-4 with a 2.34 ERA and six complete games in 25 starts.
The Tigers have lost five in a row.
Second baseman Omar Infante had been hitting .459 (17-for-37) during an eight-game hitting streak before going 0-for-4 on Monday.