Their opponents, the Detroit Tigers, are no strangers to facing the Yankees in the postseason.
This is the same Tigers team that knocked out the Yankees last year in the 2011 ALDS and ended the Yankees' run for another championship.
The Tigers had to go to five games to knock off the Oakland A's in the ALDS and relied on Justin Verlander to pitch them to a Game 5 victory.
So now for the Yankees, they will await the Tigers coming into the Bronx to begin the ALCS with a chance to go to the 2012 World Series.
What can we expect from this series?
Let's break down each teams roster and their stats through the playoffs, how they did against each other in the regular season, and end with a final series prediction.
Here's how the Yankees' lineup should look against the Tigers:
1. SS—Derek Jeter (.364, 8-for-22, 0 HR, 2 RBI)
2. LF—Ichiro Suzuki (.217, 5-for-23, 0 HR, 3 RBI)
3. 2B—Robinson Cano (.091, 2-for,22, 0 HR, 2 RBI)
4. 1B—Mark Teixeira (.353, 6-for-16, 0 HR, 1 RBI)
5. 3B—Alex Rodriguez (.125, 2-for-16, 0 HR, 0 RBI)
6. DH—Raul Ibanez (.444, 4-for-9, 2 HR, 4 RBI)
7. RF—Nick Swisher (.111, 2-for-18, 0 HR, 1 RBI)
8. CF—Curtis Granderson (.158, 3-for-19, 1 HR, 1 RBI)
9. C—Russell Martin (.176, 3-for-17, 1 HR, 1 RBI)
You will also see a bit of Eric Chavez, who could start in place of A-Rod, just like he did in Game 5 of the ALDS. Brett Gardner will also see time as a defensive replacement.
Here's how the Tigers' lineup should look against the Yankees:
1. CF—Austin Jackson (.250, 5-for-20, 0 HR, 3 RBI)
2. LF—Quintin Berry (.300, 3-for-10, 0 HR, 0 RBI)
3. 3B—Miguel Cabrera (.250, 5-for-20, 0 HR, 1 RBI)
4. 1B—Prince Fielder (.190, 4-for-21, 1 HR, 2 RBI)
5. DH—Delmon Young (.235, 4-for-17, 0 HR, 2 RBI)
6. RF—Andy Dirks (.294, 5-for-17, 0 HR, 0 RBI)
7. SS—Jhonny Peralta (.294, 5-for-17, 0 HR, 0 RBI)
8. C—Alex Avila (.250, 3-for-12, 1 HR, 1 RBI)
9. 2B—Omar Infante (.353, 6-for-17, 0 HR, 0 RBI)
Gerald Laird was the other catcher that split time with Avila and will likely see time behind the plate as well against the Yankees.
The starting rotation:
1. LHP—CC Sabathia (2-0, 1.53 ERA)
2. LHP—Andy Pettitte (0-1, 3.86 ERA)
3. RHP—Hiroki Kuroda (0-0, 2.16 ERA)
4. RHP—Phil Hughes (0-0, 1.35 ERA)
1. RHP—Derek Lowe (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
2. RHP—David Phelps (0-1, 6.75 ERA)
3. LHP—Boone Logan (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
4. LHP—Clay Rapada (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
5. RHP—Joba Chamberlain (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
6. RHP—David Robertson (1-0, 0.00 ERA)
7. RHP—Rafael Soriano (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
The starting rotation:
1. RHP—Justin Verlander (2-0. 0.56 ERA)
2. RHP—Doug Fister (0-0. 2.57 ERA)
3. RHP—Max Scherzer (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
4. RHP—Anibal Sanchez (0-1, 2.84 ERA)
1. Rick Porcello (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
2. Al Alburquerque (1-0, 0.00 ERA)
3. Phil Coke (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
4. Octavio Dotel (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
5. Joaquin Benoit (0-0, 6.00 ERA)
6. Jose Valverde (0-1, 16.20 ERA)
During the 2012 season, the Yankees and Tigers played three series, and the Yankees had the edge 6-4.
In the first series at Yankee Stadium, the Yankees took two out of three.
On April 27, the Yankees won 7-6. On April 28, the Tigers won 7-5. On April 29, the Yankees won 6-2.
In the next series, which was at Comerica Park, the Yankees again won two out of three.
On June 1, the Yankees won 9-4. On June 2, the Tigers won 4-3. On June 3, the Yankees won 5-1.
In the final series, which was again at Comerica Park, the two teams split 2-2.
On August 6, the Tigers won 7-2. On August 7, the Tigers won 6-5. On August 8, the Yankees won 12-8. On August 9, the Yankees won 4-3.
Yankees ace CC Sabathia was 3-0 against the Tigers in 2012.
At Yankee Stadium, the Yankees won the series 2-1.
At Comerica Park, the Yankees won the series 4-3.
Here's how the ALCS breaks down for each game:
Game 1: Saturday, October 13, 8:07 p.m., Yankee Stadium
Game 2, Sunday, October 14, 4:07 p.m., Yankee Stadium
Game 3, Tuesday, October 16, 8:07 p.m., Comerica Park
Game 4, Wednesday, October 17, 8:07 p.m., Comerica Park
Game 5, Thursday, October 18, 4:07 p.m., Comerica Park
Game 6, Saturday, October 21, 8:07 p.m., Yankee Stadium
Game 7, Sunday, October 22, 8:07 p.m. Yankee Stadium
The last time the Yankees played a team they had trouble with in the playoffs, they conquered them, beating the Angels in the 2009 ALCS.
I see a similar scenario with the Yankees playing Detroit, who have beaten them in two prior ALDS series.
With the Yankees' pitching, if they continue the trend of excellent starts like they did against the Orioles, I don't think any team stands a chance against them.
Not only have the starters been great, but the bullpen has been lights out, and that can play a major factor if they are in close games with Detroit.
I think the hitters will turn it around and start hitting against the Detroit pitching staff, well maybe not Alex Rodriguez.
But Curtis Granderson and Ichiro Suzuki both looked like they had turned the corner in Game 5. And I have a gut feeling Robinson Cano will snap out of his slump against the Tigers and have a field day.
Detroit has a fearful 1-2 in Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder, but I think if the Yankees pitch like they did in the ALDS, they can tame Detroit.
I think the Yankees owe the Tigers for both 2006 and 2011, just like the Yankees owed the Angels for 2002 and 2005 in the 2009 ALCS.
I am going with the Yankees to beat the Tigers 4-2, win the American League Championship and move on to play in the 2012 World Series.