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Sunday, June 23, 2013

YANKEES ROTATION: THE BACK TWO

What do we do about this rotation? As shaky as he’s been, CC Sabathia still holds the title of “Ace” on the staff. Hiroki Kuroda has been the Yankees’ steadiest arm, and their true ace. Andy Pettitte has more good games than bad, but injuries and consistency have been creeping concerns. David Phelps has slightly more good games than bad, and Phil Hughes is a mess. The Back Two create the questions.


Trades could work, although the Yankees can forget about Philadelphia parting with Cliff Lee or any of the Phillies starters. GM Ruben Amaro Jr said  “Absolutely not, because these are guys I’d be better off having on my club than not...”  

So who else is out there? Trade rumors are swirling in Atlanta around starter Paul Maholm. It seems unlikely the Yankees would get him though, as interest in him is already high in Oakland. Probably to replace Bartolo Colon who seems likely to be suspended for use of banned substances.
Blue Jay Josh Johnson is also gaining heat in Trade Rumor-town, but the likelihood of him coming to another AL East team like the Yankees is very low.


Noise is being made out of Chicago about Scott Feldman. The Cubs pitcher has had eight quality starts in his last ten, is 6-5, with an ERA of 3.05. He has yet to be attached to the Yankees but if the Bombers are going to pick up a guy, they could do worse than Feldman.


The Yankees could get Bud Norris from the Astros to shore things up. Even though he is 5-7 on the year, Norris sports an ERA of 3.64 with decent stats on the side as well. Considering he takes the mound for the hapless Astros, that isn’t bad. The Yankees could low ball an offer to Houston for Bud. Heck, give them Hughes, he is clearly unable to call Yankee Stadium home.


Other names popping up in Rumor-Ville include Matt Garza and Yovani Gallardo, who is having just as bad a season as Hughes is. Neither of these guys can help New York. Everything else available out there would also not fit well in Pinstripes.

So that leaves the Bombers with who they already have. Hughes is no longer an option. Joba Chamberlain’s time also seems to be up. Ivan Nova? He still has a long way to go to earn anyone’s trust. His best fit might be replacing Joba in the bullpen.


That leaves Adam Warren, Vidal Nuno, and Phelps. For now, Phelps holds his spot. Warren has promise but needs to be cooked a bit more. Vidal Nuno may be the best option to plug into the fifth spot as of this writing.

The rotation has too many question marks right now. Sabathia and Pettitte have been shaky, and so has Phelps. Hughes is a lost cause. Michael Pineda cannot provide the immediate help the Bombers need right now. Best timetables for his return are a month away.

There comes a time when ownership must realize there are only so many patches one can put on a tire. The Yankees are limping badly right now. They need some fresh arms. Pull the trigger on a trade and give a younger pitcher a shot, and perhaps that will steady the Back Two.

 
Chad R. MacDonald
BYB Writer
Facebook: New York Yankees the Home of Champions
My Blog: ChadRants


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