March 13, 2012; Tampa, FL, USA; New York Yankees starting pitcher Ivan Nova (47) throws a pitch in the first inning against the Boston Red Sox at George M. Steinbrenner Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE
It goes without saying that good ol' Carsten Charles "CC" Sabathia will be on the mound for the Yankees opening day game vs. the Tampa Bay Rays, but one often asked question this spring has been how the rest of the rotation will stack up come regular season time.
Joe Girardi recently announced that Hiroki Kuroda will be the Yankees No. 2 starter, which also means that he'll start the home opener against Albert Pujols and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim on Friday, April 13.
The other three rotation spots are up for grabs, with Phil Hughes, Ivan Nova, Michael Pineda and Freddy Garcia battling each other, and Andy Pettitte eventually (likely) taking a spot away from someone.
Mark Feinsand tweeted the following:
Why do I think Nova is in the rotation? He's pitching in the minors today so the Os don't see him. Why? That's who his 1st start is against.
It's an interesting idea, and one that I had not thought of. The Yankees head to Baltimore after their three game series vs. the Rays, so that would mean Nova will not get one of the top three spots in the rotation.
Phil Hughes has been extremely impressive this spring, while Michael Pineda has also impressed despite his lack of velocity.
The odd man out right now appears to be Freddy Garcia, who will either be traded or sent to the bullpen. There are concerns that Garcia cannot pitch long relief, but the Yanks will not simply cut him, so if a trade can't be made, it appears Garcia will be a long reliever.
So the rotation appears to be Sabathia, Kuroda, Hughes, Pineda and Nova.
How would you set up the rotation? Do you think Garcia still has a chance to make it?