Friday, March 23, 2012


OK, we’ve been through the rotation a few times this Spring Training and everyone is already forming alliances on who should be the Yankees rotation #2 through #5. After all, we already know CC Sabathia is our #1, right?

Right off the bat, many of you believe that Michael Pineda is the guy that needs the #2 in the Yankees rotation. I’m here to tell you that unless the guy is lights out the rest of Spring Training, he's dropping down in the rotation, because of experience, talk of velocity drop and his overweight issue. If I had to predict, I'm making him the Yankees #4, but that's for the Yankees to decide.

Some believe Ivan Nova could be the Yankees #2, after all in 2011, he was 16-4 with a 3.70 ERA. I’m here to tell you that while it’s very possible, I believe the Yankees will monitor Ivan Nova more closely and there are even rumblings that perhaps his rotation spot may be in jeopardy because of Andy Pettitte's arrival. I believe the Yankees really like Nova and they'll move him to the #5 spot to compete against Phil Hughes. That's my guess, but we shall see.

Some are suggesting that having a veteran behind Sabathia, a lefty, could be good. So, Hiroki Kuroda, a righty, may be a nice compliment. I believe that. Because CC is a lefty and Kuroda is a righty, I'd make Kuroda a #2 and I'd make Andy Pettitte, if he's up to snuff of course, a #3 rotation guy. Lefty, righty, lefty. Some would say, well, is Kuroda better than AJ Burnett? Good question, I guess we’ll need to see. I’m just curious to how this all works out too, after all, I’m a fan first. I want to see my guys dominate, but that’s what Spring Training is for.

And don’t forget, no rotation is set in stone. Much like last year, the rotation gets alittle hairy at times, between juggling rest and inconsistency, sometimes guys get switched around. In the end, it all works out, like, for example, we may find Kuroda struggling and Pineda doing well early and so, things may need to change. Maybe Ivan Nova pitches so well in April we move him up in the rotation for a bit, or, maybe he doesn’t .

And back to that 5th spot in the rotation? I suggested a competition between Ivan Nova and Phil Hughes because, let's be honest, the writings on the wall for Freddy Garcia. During last night's game against the Sox, there was a moment where a graphic appeared and on it, they showed the Yankee bullpen guys. On that page there was a spot that read Phil Hughes or Freddy Garcia. Bottom line, only 1 guy will get that 5th spot and if the Yankees already have Sabathia, Pineda, Pettitte, Kuroda and Nova, either Hughes and Garcia must compete for a starter role, the other is a goner. Logically I believe that Hughes will always be the Yankees "Golden Boy" and Freddy Garcia will be traded when the time is right. Then if Nova and Hughes compete against one another and one wins the 5th spot, the other moves to another role, be it the pen or AAA to improve. It's harsh, but it's business. Yes it’s true that Freddy Garcia would be happy to pitch on the side of the West Side Highway, just as long as he’s working, but the Yankees have many starters now, so someone has to go.

If I had to predict, the rotation at this moment looks like this:

1. CC Sabathia

2. Hiroki Kuroda

3. Andy Pettitte

4. Michael Pineda

5. Ivan Nova or Phil Hughes

Tell Bleeding Yankee Blue how you'd want the Yankees rotation to shake down right now, comment on this post and tell us.

In the end, we can’t get crazy, it will all work out. Be it Pineda, Pettitte or Nova or Kuroda, at the end of the day, the rotation looks stronger than it did before and we do have a legitimate shot this season, after all, doesn’t pitching win ballgames? We have the arms, we have the heart, now we just need the ring…I can’t wait.

Please comment, we have DISQUS, it's easier than ever. Let me know what you think and follow me on Twitter @BleednYankeeBlu and join the group Bleeding Yankee Blue on Facebook, just type it in.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for commenting on Bleeding Yankee Blue.