I made an interesting point in the comments section of Genevosey’s post. At least it was interesting to me. I suggest that the fifth starter position be handled a bit differently this season. I Propose that we let the Job go to either Gaudin or Mitre and put both Hughes and Chamberlain in the bull-pen.
I know you are all thinking that I have lost my mind, but look at it this way. The Fifth starter position gets the least number of starts due to days off and the all-star break ect… Having a bull-pen that containsNames like Chamberlain,Hughes, Robertson, Aceves, Marte, Melancon,Rameriz, Albaladejo,Brackman and Rivera, would not be horrible. Not to mention that if the job went to Mitre, Gaudin would be available as the long man as well. Obviously the Yankees aren’t going to carry that many relievers but it just goes to show the depth the Yankees have in this department. I know its hard for me to be bias but I honestly think the Yankees may have the best bull pen in baseball.
Joba showed in the playoffs and the World Series that he is still a dominant relief pitcher. It just seems when he starts he is hesitant. This shows especially with his fastball that sits around 91-93 when starting and when coming out of the bullpen for an inning or two it hits 95-100mph .
Phil Hughes seemed to really fit in as the eighth inning guy last season. Minus the post-season he was dominant and feared in the eighth inning.
Sergio Mitre showed flashes of brilliance in the starting rotation and other times he got lit up. Another year away from his Tommy John surgery should show him to be even stronger and better able to locate his fastball. I believe Mitre would be more than adequate as a fifth starter and by doing so the Yankees could easily give themselves the most dominate bull-pen in baseball.
That being said I don’ t think they will do it. I think they will be looking more at the Future of their talented young duo and try and figure out if one or both of them is going to be an effective starter in the MLB. If Hughes wins the job He will run into the same thing as Joba last season with pitch count restrictions.
If Its Joba it will be his first season without the famous “Joba Rules” hanging over his head which may have held him back.
The other pitchers that are coming into the spring and were told to prepare as starters are Chad Gaudin, Sergio Mitre, and Alfredo Aceves. There are a couple of more names on the roster as starters and they are Ivan Nova and Christian Garcia but they don’t really have a chance of breaking camp with a starting job.
Will their really be a competition between these pitchers for the fifth starter position? Or will it more likely just be a competition between Joba and Hughes? I think we all know the answer to that question. If a real competition were held I wouldn’t be surprised if someone unexpected came out victorious.