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Missing headline for 07ONYY-MIN_C1

TWINS VS. YANKEES

New York won the season series, 7-0

Game 1: Today at New York, 3:07 p.m. (TBS)

Game 2: Friday at New York, 3:07 p.m (TBS)

Game 3: Sunday at Minneapolis, TBA (TBS)

x-Game 4: Monday at Minneapolis, TBA (TBS)

x-Game 5: Oct. 14 at New York, TBA (TBS)

x-if necessary

Minnesota Twins

(87-76, first in AL Central)

Projected lineup

CF Denard Span (.311, 8 HRs, 68 RBI, 23 SBs)

SS Orlando Cabrera (.282, 9, 77, 101 games were with A’s)

C Joe Mauer (.365, 28, 96 despite missing all of April)

RF Jason Kubel (.300, 28, 103)

1B Michael Cuddyer (.276, 32, 94)

LF Delmon Young (.284, 12, 60)

DH Jose Morales (.311, 0, 7 in 54 games)

3B Matt Tolbert (.232, 2, 19 in 71 games)

2B Nick Punto (.228, 1, 38)

Projected rotation

LH Brian Duensing (5-2, 3.64 ERA in 24 games, 9 starts)

RH Nick Blackburn (11-11, 4.03)

RH Carl Pavano (14-12, 5.10, 21 starts were with Cleveland)

RH Scott Baker (15-9, 4.37)

Key relievers

RH Joe Nathan (2-2, 2.10, 47 saves)

RH Matt Guerrier (5-1, 2.36)

Breakdown

Minnesota trailed the Detroit Tigers by seven games on Sept. 6, then went on a late tear to win its fifth AL Central title in eight years under manager Ron Gardenhire. In a one-game tiebreaker for the division crown, the Twins beat Detroit, 6-5 in 12 innings, to extend their tenure at the wacky Metrodome. ... The Twins were not more than three games above .500 until Sept. 19. ... Nathan, a four-time All-Star, set a team record for saves. ... Losing All-Star 1B Justin Morneau and his 30 HRs and 100 RBI in early September to a back injury hurt, but Morneau was already in a bad second-half slump. 3B Joe Crede was lost for the year, too, when his back flared up, but he hit only .225 and couldn’t stay healthy. Minnesota’s inconsistency stemmed from a lack of offense from the bottom third of the lineup and a rotation that was in shambles in August. … The Twins are surging with a 17-4 record since Sept. 6

New York Yankees

(103-59, first in AL East)

Projected lineup

SS Derek Jeter (.334, 18, 66, 107 runs, 30 SBs, 212 hits)

LF Johnny Damon (.282, 24, 82, 107 runs)

1B Mark Teixeira (.292, 39, 122, 103 runs, 43 2Bs)

3B Alex Rodriguez (.286, 30, 100)

DH Hideki Matsui (.274, 28, 90)

C Jorge Posada (.285, 22, 81)

2B Robinson Cano (.320, 25, 85, 103 runs, 204 hits)

RF Nick Swisher (.249, 29, 82)

CF Melky Cabrera (.274, 13, 68)

Projected rotation

LH CC Sabathia (19-8, 3.37, 230 IP)

RH A.J. Burnett (13-9, 4.04)

LH Andy Pettitte (14-8, 4.16).

Key relievers

RH Mariano Rivera (3-3, 1.76, 44/46 saves, 72 Ks, 12 BBs)

RH Phil Hughes (8-3, 3.03, 3 saves, 51 games)

Breakdown

Back in the playoffs after a one-year hiatus, the Yankees (103-59) finished with baseball’s best record to earn home-field advantage throughout the postseason. They won the AL East by eight games over wild-card Boston, their first division title since 2006. It is their 14th playoff berth in 15 years – but the first for Joe Girardi, in his second season managing New York. Now, the pressure builds. Looking for that elusive 27th championship, the Yankees haven’t reached the World Series since 2003 or won it all since 2000. They spent $423.5 million last winter on Teixeira, Sabathia and Burnett, and they all delivered during the regular season. … New York has been eliminated in the first round three consecutive times from 2005-07. The Yankees are 0-4 in playoff series since beating Minnesota in 2004. They followed that up with an unprecedented collapse, blowing a 3-0 lead against Boston in the 2004 AL Championship Series.

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