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Jays-Yankees rained out; doubleheader set for Wednesday

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The Associated Press
9/18/2012 6:30:12 PM
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NEW YORK -- Andy Pettitte waited quite a while to get back on the mound for the New York Yankees.

Because of shaky weather, Pettitte got pushed back again.

The game between the Toronto Blue Jays and Yankees scheduled for Tuesday night was postponed because of all-day dampness.

The teams will play a day-night doubleheader Wednesday, with Pettitte starting the opener at 1:05 p.m. and the second game at 7:05 p.m.

"I would have loved to throw today and have no rain. I'm just ready to get out there," Pettitte said.

Pettitte has been out since a line drive by Cleveland's Casey Kotchman broke his left leg near the ankle on June 27. At the time, the 40-year-old lefty was expected to miss at least six weeks.

Pettitte's injury took longer to heal, however, and he became more and more antsy to get back out on the mound. Especially with the Yankees in a pennant race, having started the day with a half-game lead over Baltimore in the AL East.

Another day, another delay. Rather than being in the middle of the diamond, Pettitte threw under the stands as the rain fell.

"It's kind of par for the course for Andy," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "I'm sure for him it's not the best thing."

Girardi said it was easily determined whether Pettitte (3-3) or rookie David Phelps (4-4) would pitch the first game or the nightcap.

"Andy, you kind of give him his choice," Girardi said. "So that was the process."

Pettitte will probably throw between 70-75 pitches, Girardi said. It could be a few more if, for example, Pettitte is pitching well and a left-handed hitter is leading off the next inning.

The postponement probably leaves Pettitte with only three possible starts in the regular season as he tries to prepare for the playoffs.

Henderson Alvarez (9-12) will start the opener for Toronto. Ricky Romero (8-14) will follow, trying to end his 13-game losing streak that ties a Blue Jays record set by Tom Underwood in 1978-79.

A light rain fell and brisk winds whipped the flags above the ballpark when the game was called about three hours before it was supposed to start. Yankees pitcher Phil Hughes and players from both sides tossed balls in the outfield after it was postponed.

As night came, the rain and winds picked up and a few tractors were put on the tarpaulin to keep it from blowing around. The expected severe weather was supposed to clear out in time for Wednesday afternoon's first pitch.

NOTES: OF Brett Gardner could be activated from the disabled list this week to give the Yankees a strong defensive replacement and a speedy pinch runner. He been sidelined since April 18 with a strained right elbow that required surgery in July, and he's not able to hit. Girardi said Gardner hasn't been ruled off the post-season roster if the Yankees reach the playoffs.

Yankee Stadium Rain Delay (Photo: Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)

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(Photo: Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
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