Has Freddy Garcia Won the Yankees Fifth Starter Job?

New York Yankees Freddy GarciaVia Chad Jennings of the Journal News:

CC Sabathia’s start on Saturday might come at the minor league complex. Girardi said they’re talking about shuffling some rotation plans for Saturday and Sunday. Bartolo Colon and Manny Banuelos are being discussed as possible starters this weekend. Colon could go Saturday. “You have to start thinking about, if a guy makes a start on Sunday, and he’s possibly on your team, and he’s possibly going to be the long man, you’re going to limit how many pitches he could possibly give you on Thursday (for the opener),” Girardi said.

A lot of people have read this and jumped to the conclusion that this means that Freddy Garcia won the job already, but personally I’m not so sure.

It certainly could be that Garcia has won the job already despite being outperformed by Colon this spring. The Yankees understand how small sample sizes work and they know Garcia’s past history of bad springs means that you can’t read too much into his performances so far. They also know that it’s a long time since Colon has been a consistent starter and it is not likely that they’ll get 200 innings out of him this season or even something close to that.

So there certainly is a chance that Garcia beats out Colon for the fifth starter job. The thing is, I’m not sold that Girardi tipped his hand. More likely he is just preparing for the contingency that either pitcher can be the longman. It’s certainly possible that he revealed too much, but the Yankees are still planning on having a meeting discuss the rotation so it seems a bit premature for Girardi to have made up his mind. Although I’m sure he probably has a preference.

When the Yankees do announce how the back end of the rotation ends up, we’ll be sure to announce it here.

What do you think? Let us know.

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