Freddy Garcia will take the mound on Tuesday night as the Yankees face the Orioles in Baltimroe. Garcia had a strong season last year, putting up a 3.62 ERA and providing the Yankees pitching staff with a much needed veteran presence.
However, he entered spring training this season seemingly as the odd man out of the rotation and it’s possible that Michael Pineda‘s injured shoulder was the only thing that saved him. He’s not out of the woods yet though as both Pineda and Andy Pettitte should be back this May. So Garcia was forced to pitch for a job in spring training and he very well may be pitching for his job this April as well.
He had mixed results against the Orioles last season. His 4.35 ERA against them was on the high side, but O’s batters only managed a .271 OBP and a .633 OPS against him and he struck out 7.8 batters per nine. That topped his 5.9 K/9 rate throughout the season.
Garcia’s main competition for the fight to stay in the rotation is Phil Hughes. Ivan Nova certainly isn’t guaranteed anything, but he showed on Monday that his spring stats were likely a fluke and if he continues to pitch well there is no chance the Yankees pull him out of the rotation.