Among the early notes from Joe Girardi is the fact Andy Pettitte was dealing with leg and back problems through the playoffs.
He felt tightness in the division series but pitched through it. Then he was unable to throw his full bullpen between starts. Had Pettitte been healthy, Girardi said, the ALCS rotation might have been different.
This is very interesting news. This is probably the reason why Pettitte didn’t pitch in game two of the ALCS. It’s also probably a big part of the reason why Girardi refused to use his starters on short rest during the playoffs. Even if CC Sabathia was the only one to go on short rest, by doing even that you are risking your only healthy and experienced starter.
This also could complicate him coming back in 2011. Pettitte was very effective when he was healthy in 2010, but the lure of his family has always been there and if he thinks that staying healthy could be a problem in the future, he might just decide to hang it up.
Hopefully he just shuts things down for a few weeks and comes back in 2011 totally healthy. If he doesn’t come back next season, that is a huge hole he would be leaving behind in the rotation.