04/15/10 7:40 PM ET
Unfamiliarity awaits Sabathia, Wilson
By Bailey Stephens / MLB.com
Historically, the Rangers would probably be happy to hear it's their lone trip to the Bronx, as the club is 13-28 in New York during the past five years and 27-48 in the past 26 seasons.
But last season, Texas showed it might be up to reversing that trend, splitting the games at the new Yankee Stadium, 3-3, with the Bronx Bombers. In fact, in 2009, The Rangers were one of four MLB teams to win a three-game series against the eventual World Series champion Yanks at the new stadium.
This road trip in general will be a test for the Rangers, as they continue on to Fenway for a three-game tilt against the Red Sox. At least in the eyes of some of Texas' players, an early-season trip to New York and Boston represents an oppurtunity to prove it can perform on the biggest of stages.
"We just like playing those teams," Josh Hamilton said. "We just do. Anytime you get a chance to go to those stadiums with their history, we just get up for big teams. If you want to be the best, we feel like we have to show them something."
For New York, the Rangers' visit comes on a special night, as the Yanks celebrate the one-year anniversary of the opening of their new ballpark -- a game that was also started by Friday's starter, CC Sabathia.
Hamilton and the Rangers may be excited for the challenge of facing the Yankees and Sabathia, but they are probably hoping he doesn't find quite the success he enjoyed in his last start, when he flirted with a no-hitter against the Rays into the eighth inning.
Manager Joe Girardi said after the game that he intended to take Sabathia out after he faced Kelly Shoppach, who broke up the no-no with a single to left, but that remains up for debate.
Rangers' starter C.J. Wilson will face off against Sabathia, a matchup that will be somewhat unfamiliar as Wilson has never faced the Yankees as a starter and Sabathia has never taken on the Rangers as a Yankee.
Rangers: Borbon given day to rest for Sabathia
Julio Borbon was given a day off on Thursday with the Indians pitching left-hander David Huff. But he is expected to be in the lineup against Sabathia. "I want Borbon to experience it, challenge him and see what he can do," Washington said. "New York, Sabathia, leadoff hitter, left-handed ... go get him."
Yankees: Teixeira taking normal April lumps
Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira is struggling again in April, but there's no need for surprise or concern, for that matter. Tex has a .249 career average in the season's first month, compared to a .297 mark over the rest of the season. After Thursday's 6-2 win, Teixeira is holding onto a .091 mark after going 0-for-2 with three walks against the Angels. He's not concerned, though, and why should he be? It's not an unfamiliar spot for the slugger. "I've been in this position a lot," Teixeira joked after Wednesday's game. "I don't want to start changing too much, because whatever struggles come early on, it turns around and turns around really well. I'm going to stick with my plan."
Hamilton is 0-10 in his career against Sabathia. ... The Rangers will be looking to continue their series-opening-game success, as the club has won all three series openers to this point. ... The Yankees improved to 6-3 with Thursday's win, marking their best start since 2003, when they began 8-1. They are also 2-1 on their current six-game homestand and have won their first three series of a season for the first time since 2003. The Yankees have yet to lose back-to-back games this season.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.