Veteran pitcher Andy Pettitte was upset when manager Joe Girardi told him he'd be skipping a start to let the inflammation in his left elbow calm down. It's early in a long season, so, it seems like a prudent move, but there's no question Detroit has the advantage tonight when Lefty Dontrelle Willis takes the mound against spot starter Sergio Mitre.

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In five appearances covering 9.2 innings, Mitre (0-0, 2.79 ERA) is off to the best start of his career. His career earned run average is 5.49. But so far this season, opponents are hitting only .156. Mitre has been stretched out for the start to the point where he should be able to last 65-75 pitches. If that gets him through four innings, Mitre will be doing well. Anything else is gravy.

Willis has been mediocre so far with a 1-1 record on 3.99 ERA. He has struck out 12 in his last two outings (both against the Twins) covering 11.1 innings, but Willis hasn't faced the Yankees since 2006.