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October Confidential: Yankees

Rival players offer inside look at facing AL Wild Card team

How do you beat the Yankees? asked rival players from around Major League Baseball to offer an inside look at how best to face the AL Wild Card team.

Masahiro Tanaka
"His split doesn't have the velocity it used to. I think that split, when it was 89 [mph], it makes him tougher to hit. Still, the guy locates his pitches real well. You just want to make sure he stays up in the zone and on the plate. His first year before he got injured, that splitter was as filthy as can be. His fastball is just average, nothing crazy. He's still a good pitcher, though. Just wait for him to elevate. When you chase the low stuff on him, he'll drive you crazy."
-- AL East position player

Michael Pineda
"His angle is what makes him so good. When he's spotting his pitches off the plate with that angle, it's hard to hit. This guy is like 6-foot-7 and looks like 10-feet tall on the mound. The way he delivers it makes it a little tougher. If he's not locating his pitches, they're going to get hit. He's got a good slider and his slider is his best pitch. He used to throw 98 but now it's more like 93-95."
-- AL East position player No. 2

:: AL Wild Card Game: Astros vs. Yankees -- Tune-in info ::

Andrew Miller
"With Andrew Miller, good luck. Yes, good luck. That's what I tell myself. If he's putting that slider where you want, you have no chance. He looks like he's 7-foot-4 out there."
-- AL East position player

Dellin Betances
"I just hope he makes a mistake. The guy is nasty. He's got good stuff, and he's learned how to pitch through the years. He has that nasty breaking ball that he throws at any time, but he's got 100 in his back pocket. You just hope he makes a mistake on the plate. You're always looking for fastball against a guy that throws 100. You don't want to be late with 100."
-- AL East position player No. 2

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Brett Gardner
"Over the years, he's definitely shown more power. He's not a guy you can just go after with fastballs because he can hit them out. Try to get him to fish at a breaking ball. With his speed, the key is just to try to keep him off the bases as often as you can."
-- AL East pitcher

Alex Rodriguez
"He's a guy who can hook that pitch that's away. You've got to make him conscious of the inside stuff. If he did have a hole, it would be up at the belt and in and soft stuff away that's a ball that you'd want him to chase. You just have to make him conscious of hard in before you throw anything away."
-- AL East pitcher

Carlos Beltran
"Even now, a good fastball hitter up in the zone. So you have to attack him down because if you leave one up in the zone he will do some damage. He's another guy who has been around for a long time and you have to try to not let him beat you in good situations."
-- AL East pitcher

Brian McCann
"He's sort of changed by his home field being Yankee Stadium and right field being what it is. You watch video of him and he crowds the plate and he can hit the ball away, he can still pull it. You've got to pitch him in on a regular basis, but you can't miss. He's one of the guys, he's a big don't-miss-down-the-middle type of guy. You're trying to stay on the corners and if you miss, miss off the plate and use off-speed pitches and pitch backwards."
-- AL East pitcher No. 2

Read More: New York Yankees, CC Sabathia, Dellin Betances, Michael Pineda, Andrew Miller, Brian McCann, Masahiro Tanaka, Brett Gardner, Carlos Beltran