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A.J. after CC? Initially, it's OK

October 16, 2009 |  4:40 pm

Aj Depending on what happens with CC Sabathia tonight, A.J. Burnett could take the mound for the Yankees on Saturday needing a win to even the series. Which would be a much more pressure-packed situation than taking the mound for a team that has won four consecutive postseason games.

Asked whether that would change the way he approached the Angels, Burnett thought for a long moment and then smiled.

"I hadn't even thought of that," he said. "I mean, I'm sure it would. But it's a game. I still have to go out and prepare whether we're up 1-0 or down 1-0."

The postseason, after all, is a new experience for Burnett, who had never pitched in the playoffs until facing the Minnesota Twins in an American League division series last week.

"I have six innings in the postseason," said Burnett, who held the Twins to a run and three hits in six innings but didn't get a decision. "But I know a little what to expect crowd-wise and everything. It's still going to be a crazy and exciting and emotional game. By all means I know how important my start is."

By the way, the forecast is calling for a 90% chance of rain with showers predicted at game time.

"I've pitched in pretty bad weather before," Burnett said. "So the weather is not going to be a factor."

-- Kevin Baxter

Photo: A.J. Burnett. Credit: Brian J. Myers / US Presswire