In the wake of bad news regarding the rehabbing Masahiro Tanaka's arm soreness, the Yankees will press onward by turning to Michael Pineda, who aims to help New York continue a tear that has seen the Bronx Bombers win seven of their past nine games.
The Yanks are chasing the Mariners and Tigers for the second American League Wild Card spot.
Pineda puts his 1.95 ERA on the line opposite Blue Jays hurler Drew Hutchison on Saturday at Rogers Centre. If this starts goes anything like Pineda's six strong innings against Toronto on April 5, his recent tear will likely continue.
The right-hander has compiled a 2.08 ERA with a walk and 12 strikeouts in three starts since returning from the disabled list on Aug. 13. Pineda held the contending Royals to one earned run on five hits in 6 1/3 innings on Monday.
"He could do pretty much whatever he wanted with the baseball," catcher Brian McCann said. "He's got so much cut on his fastball that I feel like he could throw that literally every pitch and be very successful, and to add in a wipe-out slider and a really good changeup -- when he's on, he's tough."
Hutchison is tasked with giving his club a chance against Pineda, and to do that he has to turn things around after struggling since mid-July. He has recorded a 6.60 ERA and only three quality starts in eight outings since July 12.
One of those quality starts came in Hutchison's last outing, as he gave up only one run in six innings against the Rays on Sunday. Despite his run of bad outings, Hutchison has given up one earned run or fewer in three of his past four starts at Rogers Centre.
His history with New York, however, is not cause for optimism. He is 2-3 with a 5.81 ERA in five career starts against the Yankees. But on July 26 at Yankee Stadium, Hutchison limited the Yanks to two earned runs in 6 2/3 innings.
Blue Jays: Melk man delivers vs. old club
An 0-for-4 showing on Friday night against the Yankees did not do much to tarnish Melky Cabrera's stats against his former team. He is batting .315 (17-for-54) with four doubles, four homers and 10 RBIs in 13 games against New York in 2014.
Cabrera has hit safely in 25 of 28 games against the Yankees since his time in pinstripes came to a close, batting .313 (36-for-115) with nine doubles, a triple and seven homers. Perhaps he can use some of that magic to snap out of his current 7-for-39 slump.
Yankees: Robertson climbing franchise charts
David Robertson has thrived since taking over the closer's role from Mariano Rivera this year, converting his 35th save in 38 chances on Friday night. He is only the sixth Yankee to record at least 35 saves in a single season.
Although Rivera's franchise record of 53 appears safe this year, five more saves would make Robertson only the fifth Yankee with 40 or more saves in a season. New York's record for most saves by someone other than Rivera is Dave Righetti's 46 in 1986.
• The Blue Jays suffered their 100th loss to the Yankees in Rogers Centre on Friday night, dropping their record against New York in the ballpark to 95-100.
• The Yankees pace the Majors with a 42-28 record in games decided by two runs or fewer in 2014.
Joe Morgan is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.