DH Glenallen Hill is capable of hitting the ball out at any time, but he's a hot-and-cold hitter who comes into the Seattle series cold. 2B Jose Vizcaino is perfect role guy: Excellent on defense and puts the ball in play or can get a bunt down. PH Jose Canseco can change a game with one swing, but does little else. Pound him inside, but if you miss, it's gone. OF Clay Bellinger plays several positions but doesn't offer much offensively.
Roger Clemens, RHP (13-8, 3.70 ERA)
Pitched very well over second half, sometimes with dominating 94 to 97 mph fastball and sometimes throwing his splitter up to 40 times a game. Also has good slider. Hot until he pitched poorly in last two regular-season starts and both starts in Division Series.
Andy Pettitte, LHP (19-9, 4.35 ERA)
Yankees' best big-game pitcher. Command is excellent; uses both sides of plate. Cutter is extremely good and changeup even better. Repeats delivery very well. Pitching with a lot of confidence.
Orlando Hernandez, RHP (12-13, 4.51 ERA)
Has been up and down, but knocks your socks off when on his stuff: two-and four-seam fastballs, sliders from different arm angles, a drop-in curve.
Denny Neagle, LHP (15-9, 4.52 ERA)
Unreliable. Can be good or awful, depending on command of his changeup. At times has altered mechanics in middle of the game, fiddling with Luis Tiant-like head turn.
Some say righthanded closer Mariano Rivera has become more hittable—lefthanders seem a tad more comfortable now—but he still throws in mid-90s and his cutter/slider is still very good. To beat the Yankees late, you have to beat him. Good luck. Setup men LHP Mike Stanton and RHP Jeff Nelson are fine statistically, but I don't have much confidence in them from appearance to appearance. Stanton has a good fastball and curveball but finds ways to get in trouble. Lefthanders can hit Nelson. With Ramiro Mendoza out for season, Nelson has been in games as early as the sixth. That's too early for him.
HOW TO BEAT THEM
Get to the starters. If they reach the seventh inning, you're done. But their middle relief is vulnerable, especially without Mendoza. The Yankees may be long in the tooth, but they can still score runs. Their fate will depend on their starting pitching. This is the team to beat in the American League.