for this game

Sabathia, Yankees go for series win over Reds

May 20, 2012 - 2:43 PM (Sports Network) - After suffering his first loss of the season, CC Sabathia aims to continue his success in interleague play as the powerful left-hander takes the mound this afternoon for the New York Yankees in the conclusion of a three-game series vs. Cincinnati.

Sabathia, who was dealt a loss at Baltimore on Tuesday, is 20-7 with a 3.42 ERA in 41 career interleague starts, owning the most such wins on the Yankees staff. He has won six of his last seven interleague starts since 2010, going 6-1 over the stretch. Additionally, he's 4-1 with a 2.33 ERA in 11 career games against the Reds.

Also coming off his first defeat of the year, Johnny Cueto gets the ball for Cincinnati. The righty, who gave up five earned runs in a 6-2 loss at Atlanta Tuesday, has faced the Yankees twice, going 1-1 with a 1.50 ERA.

The Reds struck out 12 times against Ivan Nova on Saturday afternoon, but still beat the Yankees 6-5 behind a three-run homer by Joey Votto and 6 1/3 good innings from Homer Bailey.

The Yankees scored twice in the ninth inning and had men at second and third base when Curtis Granderson grounded out to end the game.

"We just didn't get the last hit that we needed to put them away," said New York manager Joe Girardi. "It was good that we came back but frustrating that we didn't win."

Bailey (2-3) snapped a five-start winless streak, striking out seven while giving up three runs on seven hits and a walk.

Votto's three-run homer in the fifth inning broke a 2-2 tie. Mike Costanzo got his first major league hit, a single in the sixth, and had a sacrifice fly in the eighth for what ended up being the game-winning RBI.

"Like I tell the guys all the time, you never know which run you score is going to be the winner," said Reds manager Dusty Baker.

The Yankees are facing the Reds in interleague play for the second straight season and fourth time overall. New York won two of three games last year in a series at Great American Ball Park.

The Yankees have recorded a winning record in interleague play in each of the last 12 seasons (since 2000), and lost just one season series vs. the NL in the 15 seasons of interleague play (5-10 in 1997).