Cabrera will try to extend his career-high hitting streak to 19 games and the Yankees continue their pursuit of another AL East title as they continue a three-game set against the Baltimore Orioles on Tuesday night.
New York (67-51) won its fourth straight with a 7-6 victory Monday, but remained four games behind first-place Boston as the Red Sox topped Tampa Bay 3-0.
Cabrera had an eventful ninth inning for the Yankees. After throwing out Melvin Mora at the plate in the top half, Baltimore’s Brian Roberts followed with a game-tying RBI single giving closer Mariano Rivera his first blown save since April 20. In the bottom of the inning, though, Cabrera was hit by a pitch with one out, raced to third on pinch-hitter Jason Giambi’s single and scored on Derek Jeter’s grounder.
“We need contributions from everyone and we seem to be getting that,” Jeter said.
Cabrera went 1-for-3 and is hitting .400 (30-for-75) with 19 RBIs during his streak. He’s also hit safely in his last nine games against Baltimore, going 12-for-33 (.364).
All-Star catcher Jorge Posada returned to the lineup after sitting out the Yankees’ three-game sweep last weekend at Cleveland with a stiff neck. Posada went 2-for-4 to increase his average to .390 since the All-Star break.
Torre indicated Rivera may not be available Tuesday after pitching each of the last two days. Rivera also gave up a run in the ninth during Sunday’s 5-3 win over the Indians, marking the first time since April 5-6, 2005 that he’s given up runs on consecutive days.
New York improved to 4-6 against Baltimore, which has yet to lose a series against the Yankees this year. Slumping Orioles outfielder Jay Payton - batting .088 (3-for-34) this month - was given Monday off in favor of Tike Redman, who went 2-for-4 with two runs.
Jeff Karstens (0-2, 10.13 ERA) will make his first start since April 28 for New York. In that game, Karstens suffered a broken leg from being hit by a comebacker from Boston leadoff hitter Julio Lugo. Karstens pitched to one more batter and needed nearly three months of rehab before returning to the majors.
The right-hander also will make his first career start against Baltimore. Karstens allowed one run and one hit over five innings of relief against the Orioles in a 9-4 loss on Sept. 8.
The Orioles (54-63) have dropped eight of 10 games in which Daniel Cabrera (8-12, 5.14) has started against the Yankees. He’s 0-1 with a 5.84 ERA in two outings versus New York this year.
Cabrera lost in his last start, giving up a season-high eight runs and eight hits over 5 1-3 innings on Thursday in a 13-8 defeat to Seattle. The right-hander fell to 2-2 with a 5.45 ERA in his last six starts.
Alex Rodriguez, who needs one homer to reach 40 for the eighth time in his career, has hit two in 22 at-bats versus Cabrera.