The Yankees have scored 47 runs in their last three games and 54 in their last four. Mike Carminati has the historicalsignificance of that outburst covered. The only question remaining is how much they'll add to it tonight against Scott Elarton, who comes off the DL sporting a 9.17 ERA. Elarton is a famously homer prone pitcher who has given up 185 home runs in 169 career starts. This year he's given up a dozen dingers in just eight starts. Though he's been hurt most of the year (offseason shoulder surgery and most recently a sprained right foot), Elarton has not finished the sixth inning in any of his eight starts thus far, and has allowed fewer than four runs in only his first start of the year, which came against the hitless White Sox in mid-May.
By comparison, Chien-Ming Wang, who takes the mound for the Yankees tonight, has allowed just six home runs in 17 starts and none in his last four, over which he has posted a 2.03 ERA. An interesting side note, opposing basestealers are 0 for 3 against Wang in those four games, this after they started the season with five successful steals against him.
Johnny Damon will DH with Melky in center, Abreu back in right, and Shelley Duncan on the bench tonight.
In other news, Phil Hughes will make what could be his penultmate rehab start for triple-A Scranton tonight. He'll be joined in the dugout by fast-rising 2006 draftees Joba Chamberlain and Ian Kennedy, who were just promoted from Trenton (Tyler Clippard and Chase Wright have been demoted to double-A to make room).