The Yankees needed Ivan Nova for a double header so they called him up from the minors for what was supposed to be one start. He pitched so well that he is here to stay and for the past couple of weeks they have been going with a 6-man rotation as a result.
Now, Joe Girardi said that by the opening of the series against Kansas City that starts on Monday they will go back to the typical 5-man rotation. That means somebody, probably Phil Hughes or A.J. Burnett, has to go.
Burnett will not pitch again before Monday which means that the person who gets cut from the roster likely depends on Hughes’ start against the Rays this Saturday. In his last start he barely saved himself from getting cut from the rotation by tossing a strong outing against the weak-hitting White Sox, but he looked very pedestrian in a relief outing against the Red Sox.
It’s hard to imagine Burnett getting cut from the rotation barring an absolute gem by Hughes. Hughes seems more fit for the bullpen with his diminishing velocity and lack of any true secondary pitch. A return to the bullpen doesn’t necessarily mean a return to his 2009 form though. Burnett also seems to be able to give the Yankees more distance even when he’s struggling too.
I want to hear from you? Whom would you prefer to be removed from the rotation? Phil Hughes or A.J. Burnett?