Deep into a stretch of the season that could help decide the Yankees' October fate, Mike Mussina will try to help New York rebound in the second game of a three-game series at Angel Stadium.
Coming off a four-game series against the Detroit Tigers in which the Yankees won three contests, New York dropped its West Coast opener on Monday in dramatic fashion, with catcher Ryan Budde touching left-hander Sean Henn for the decisive hit in the 10th inning.
Mussina is looking to bounce back from a loss in his last effort, an Aug. 16 start against the Tigers at Yankee Stadium in which he allowed a season-high seven runs (six earned) in five innings, suffering an 8-5 defeat.
Mussina, who had won four consecutive starts before seeing Detroit last week, has faced the Angels once this season, recording a no-decision in a 4-3 loss on May 27 in the Bronx.
The Angels present a tough customer in right-hander Kelvim Escobar, who is 13-6 with three complete games, one shutout and a 2.68 ERA over 23 starts this season. Escobar is facing the Yankees for the second time in 2007 and is 7-7 with a 4.98 ERA lifetime vs. New York.
NYY: RHP Mike Mussina (8-8, 4.76 ERA)
Mussina has always compiled good numbers and performances at Angel Stadium. As a Yankee, Mussina is 3-0 with a 1.35 ERA in Anaheim. Overall, he is 9-2 with a 2.74 ERA in 14 career starts at the Big A.
LAA: RHP Kelvim Escobar (13-6, 2.68 ERA)
Escobar will be making his 17th career start and 37th appearance against the Yankees. As a starter, he hasn't fared nearly as well against New York, logging a 6-7 record and a 5.04 ERA (48 earned runs in 85 2/3 innings) over 16 games.
Player to watch
Manager Joe Torre may want to try Jason Giambi in the lineup on Tuesday. The slugger is 12-for-34 (.353) with four doubles, three home runs and eight RBIs against Escobar.
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Wednesday: Yankees (Andy Pettitte, 10-7, 3.80) at Angels (John Lackey, 15-7, 3.32), 10:05 p.m. ET
Friday: Yankees (Roger Clemens, 5-5, 3.92) at Tigers (TBD), 7:05 p.m. ET
Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.