Game 5 matchup AL CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES

October 13, 1996|By Buster Olney

Yanks' Andy Pettitte (ALCS: 0-0, 5.14) vs. O's Scott Erickson (ALCS: 0-0, 2.84)

What Pettitte throws: A cut fastball that runs into right-handed hitters, a slider and a changeup. He pitches similarly to Jimmy Key, except he's got more ability to pitch inside. If he's throwing strikes and gets ahead in the count, then he'll get hitters to swing at bad pitches away.

Pettitte of late: Pettitte likely will win the AL Cy Young Award this season, but like a New York Cy Young Award winner of the past -- Ron Guidry in 1978 -- he has not been as good in the postseason, allowing eight runs in 13 1/3 innings. But he can be very, very good. Before Game 1, Pettitte had allowed exactly one homer to left-handed hitters this season. Brady Anderson and Rafael Palmeiro each homered off him in Game 1.

Something to look for: If Pettitte has good command of his pitches, he can be every bit as tough on the Orioles as Jimmy Key was in Game 3.

E9 Orioles vs. Pettitte (career stats, includes Game 1):

..... . Avg., AB, H, HR, RBI

B. J. Surhoff .470, 17, 8, 0, 4

Eddie Murray .389, 18, 7, 0, 6

Bobby Bonilla .350, 20, 7, 1, 4

Manny Alexander .333, 3, 1, 0, 0

Brady Anderson .333, 18, 6, 1, 1

Cal Ripken .333, 18, 6, 0, 0

Rafael Palmeiro .318, 22, 7, 2, 5

Roberto Alomar .250, 12, 3, 0, 0

Chris Hoiles .200, 10, 2, 1, 1

Mark Parent .200, 5, 1, 0, 0

Mike Devereaux .100, 10, 1, 0, 1

Bill Ripken .000, 5, 0, 0, 0

Todd Zeile .000, 8, 0, 0, 1

What Erickson throws: Sinking fastball and a slider. Erickson usually likes to run his sinkers down and away from left-handed hitters, but over the last month, he's jammed left-handed hitters more often with fastballs.

Erickson of late: Erickson outpitched Pettitte in Game 1 of this series, allowing two earned runs on seven hits over 6 1/3 innings, ** but Erickson didn't have his typical command, walking three. In the postseason, he has a 3.46 ERA in 13 innings, walking five and striking out nine.

Something to look for: Erickson is better on shortened rest, and he'll be on three days' rest today. He should have a lot of movement on his sinker, but he needs Rocky Roe to call a low strike zone.

Yankees vs. Erickson (career stats, includes Game 1): cludes Game 1):

....... ....... .. Avg., AB, H, HR, RBI

Darryl Strawberry .500, 4, 2, 0, 0

Paul O'Neill .385, 26, 10, 0, 1

Mike Aldrete .370, 27, 10, 0, 3

Derek Jeter .333, 12, 4, 0, 0

Wade Boggs .326, 46, 15, 0, 4

Bernie Williams .321, 28, 9, 0, 2

Pat Kelly .300, 20, 6, 0, 2

Tim Raines .295, 44, 13, 0, 5

Tino Martinez .294, 34, 10, 1, 8

Charlie Hayes .286, 7, 2, 0, 0

Tony Fernandez .278, 18, 5, 0, 1

Mariano Duncan .250, 12, 3, 0, 0

Joe Girardi .250, 4, 1, 0, 2

Cecil Fielder .208, 48, 10, 0, 7

Luis Sojo .188, 16, 3, 0, 0

Jim Leyritz .167, 6, 1, 0, 1

Pub Date: 10/13/96

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