The visiting Yankees have enjoyed success versus the Orioles starter in the past heading into Saturday night’s matchup.
New York (42-37) is 15-10 against left-handed starters for baseball’s third-best mark while Britton (1-2, 5.51 ERA) owns a 7.82 ERA versus the Yankees for his second-worst against any club.
Britton is 1-3 in six starts against New York, although he has fared better in going 1-1 with a 2.60 ERA in three at home.
Robinson Cano is 4 for 10 against Britton. The star second baseman has gone 10 straight games without an extra-base hit after collecting three singles in Friday’s 4-3 loss.
The Yankees blew a 3-0 lead after CC Sabathia held the Orioles (45-36) hitless through five innings. Baltimore rallied for three runs in the sixth inning before Nate McLouth hit a go-ahead solo homer in the seventh.
“Tonight was a team win because we didn’t get anything until the sixth inning,” center fielder Adam Jones said. “We got everything in spurts.”
“I think he’s leading the league in appearances, he pitched three out of four days, threw 60-something pitches in three days,” said Showalter about Johnson. “I just wanted to give him one more day. He feels good and I want to keep him that way.”
Showalter indicated after the victory that the Orioles may consider calling up a pitcher from Triple-A Norfolk since they do not have a long reliever available Saturday. It’s because Kevin Gausman pitched 4 1-3 innings of relief for his first career victory after T.J. McFarland lasted 2 2-3 in his first career start.
The Yankees will start David Phelps (5-4, 4.01), who was originally listed to start Friday. Manager Joe Girardi insisted the mix-up stemmed from a miscommunication between pitching coach Larry Rothschild and the team’s public relations department.
“In my mind, it was always CC on Friday and Phelps on Saturday,” said Girardi, whose team has lost three straight since he notched his 599th career victory.
Phelps threw four innings of scoreless relief while allowing only one hit in New York’s 5-3 loss to Baltimore on April 13. He also recorded three scoreless relief appearances against the Orioles last year, but posted an 8.31 ERA without a decision in two starts.
Major league home run leader Chris Davis is 0 for 7 with four strikeouts against the right-hander. Davis is 9 for 25 with two homers and 14 strikeouts against the Yankees, with the Orioles leading the season series 4-3.
Phelps is 4-3 with a 3.63 ERA over 10 starts this season, and New York has won his last six versus AL East foes.
He’ll have to be wary of Matt Wieters 3 for 7 against him with two homers.
The Orioles expect to be once again without Brian Roberts out since the first week of the season with an injured hamstring. Roberts is slated to rejoin Baltimore on Sunday.