“I don’t remember the sink on his ball that he has now,” Girardi said. “I don’t remember his changeup being that good and I don’t remember his breaking ball being that good. I remember him being more of a power pitcher that could locate. Now he can do the other things – and still locate – and he’s been effective.
“It is impressive; when you watch him, it’s pretty simple how he does it,” Girardi said. “He’s kind of reinvented himself. He still throws up to 93, but you’re not going to see that 97 or 98 we used to see in the seventh and eighth inning.”
It certainly is starting to feel like Bartolo Colon is going to beat out Freddy Garcia for the job. One has just out pitched the other and even though spring stats don’t mean a whole lot at this point it seems as if Colon offers the higher upside.
The biggest problem picking Colon over Garcia remains the fact that Colon hasn’t even tossed 100 innings since 2005 while Garcia is likely to be able to throw at least 150 innings. The catch is that it is hard to see a scenario where either pitcher is on the team in September as they will likely either breakdown, the Yankees will make a trade, or a prospect will emerge at the major league level. Because of that it seems smart to go with the hot hand right now which would clearly be Colon.
There is the issue of Ivan Nova. He’s pitched well in spring training and seemingly has won a job, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that he’ll be successful in the majors or be able to toss 150-200 innings. That means that even if the Yankees do like Colon over Garcia that it is possible that they stash Nova in the longman role while they give both pitchers more of a shot to show what they’ve got.
At this point anything is still possible, but it seems like Colon is likely to win a job.