What's new: LHP CC Sabathia is the latest big-name Yankee to be shut down for the season, joining SS Derek Jeter, OF Brett Gardner, 1B Mark Teixeira, DH Travis Hafner, C Austin Romine and 3B Kevin Youkilis. 3B Alex Rodriguez is in a 3-for-33 skid and OF Curtis Granderson is 10 for his past 60. But 2B Robinson Cano remains a major threat, and OF Alfonso Soriano has been hot since coming over from the Cubs. The rotation is tattered, but the bullpen can still be overpowering. There will be large crowds and plenty of emotion as RHP Mariano Rivera plays his last three games at the Stadium; Yankees have won 12 of past 17 home games.
Key stat: The Yankees have used a franchise-record 56 players this season, including 33 position players (most since the 2004 Royals). Eight made their big-league debuts.
Connections: Rays C Jose Molina and OF Freddy Guzman are former Yankees; N.Y. pitching coach Larry Rothschild was the first Devil Rays manager.
Series history: Rays lead 9-7 this season, Yankees lead 165-107 overall, 90-44 in New York.
Marc Topkin, Times staff writer