The five battling for fifth

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

We are now less than two weeks away from the first pitch of the Major League Baseball season. 12 days to be exact. 12 more days until Derek Jeter walks to the plate taps the plate with his bat while he holds his arm held up to the umpire. 12 more days until we can just watch baseball everyday instead of the normal crap that is on TV.

Before we get to that point, however, the Yankees have some decisions to make. The most pressing issue, is the decision for the Yanks fifth starter. This despite the fact that the Yankees only need to use CC Sabathia, AJ Burnett, Javy Vazquez, and Andy Pettitte until April 24th because of the schedule.

But Joe Girardi will announce his decision Thursday about who will win the job, so I thought it would be a good idea to take a look at the competitors

Sergio Mitre- (14 IP, 3.21 ERA, 14 K)
Mitre has pitched very well this spring, as he now seems to be completely healed from Tommy John surgery. He is throwing harder and has better command. It will be interesting if the Yankees, as an organization, are willing to give Mitre the spot over two of their most higly-touted prospects in Hughes and Chamberlain.

Phil Hughes- (13 IP, 4.15 ERA, 10 K)
After being extremely effective out of the bullpen last year, Hughes is vying for a spot as a starter, which he has been throughout his entire career. He gave up 3 homeruns to the Phillies yesterday, but both Girardi and Hughes said that he was throwing his best stuff yesterday. He hasn't proven himself as a starter yet in the majors, but this may be his shot.

Joba Chamberlain
-(6.2 IP, 16.20 ERA, 5 K)
He hasn't had very good stats this spring, but spring training stats aren't worth the paper they're printed on. He pitched well as a starter last season, until the Yankees started limiting his innings, but there are no inning restrictions this year, so they may finally just hand him the ball and say "go get 'em."

Chad Gaudin- ( 9.1 IP, 8.68 ERA, 5K)
This name on the list has a little bit of an asterisk next to it, because, according to some reports, Gaudin was placed on waivers, but Chad Jennings reports he's still in camp and there's nothing official on the Yankees website, so I'll at least mention him. He pitched very well last season, but he is out of options and due almost $3 million this season.

Alfredo Aceves-(14.1 IP, 3.77 ERA, 7K)
Aceves was impressive out of the Yankees bullpen last year, winning 10 games as a reliever. I think it is unlikely that he gets the nod as a starter, but he is in the mix. he's had one of the best springs of any of the candidates, which I'm sure is making Girardi's decision much tougher.

We're all waiting to hear Giradi's decision, as well as waiting for the roster to be finalized as we move closer to the season, so make sure you stay tuned for all that news.


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