It seems like every year the Yankees are in the market for starting pitching at the trade deadline. A few days ago, I would not have thought New York would be looking for pitching at the deadline. C.C Sabathia has been his usual self (3.45 ERA), leading the front of the rotation. Phil Hughes (4.48 ERA), while not the best, has been good enough to stick at the back of the rotation. Hiroki Kuroda has proved to be a great offseason addition as he has put together a 3.40 ERA. His at 4.22 which suggests some decline but he has still pitched well. Andy Pettitte has been a great addition as he has a 3.29 ERA, 3.58 FIP, and an 8.56 K/9. Ivan Nova has also been solid this year with a 4.25 ERA and a 4.46 FIP.
The starting pitching as a whole has not been terrific but they’ve been good and the offense has given them the run support. New York’s starters have a 6.7 WAR which ranks 12th in baseball and 5th in the American League. They have a 4.02 ERA and a 4.12 FIP which both rank right around the middle of the league. Yes there is room for improvement in the rotation but it has not been a huge need and there should be no desperation forNew York to look at staring pitching upgrades. Well after today, the Yankees may have to start looking into trading for some starting pitching.
News broke this morning that C.C. Sabathia would be headed to the DL with a slight strain in his left groin. It is not too serious of an injury but he is expected to miss two starts. Luckily the all-star break is coming up which gives Sabathia a little more time to recover and he is expected to return following the all star break. Two starts isn’t a huge loss but the bigger loss came in this afternoon’s game. Casey Kotchman lined a ball right back at Pettitte and it went right off of his left ankle. Shortly after, it was released that Pettitte broke his ankle and is expected to miss at least six weeks.
Freddy Garcia and most likely Adam Warren will be filling the two spots in the rotation. Whoever pitches the best, will probably remain in the rotation once Sabathia returns but what if that does not go too well? Sure Garcia looked good last year in the Yankees rotation but this is another year. He has a 6.91 ERA in 28.2 innings this year including 4 starts. Warren has yet to pitch in the major leagues so he’s a bit of a wild card. He has a 3.86 ERA and a 4.23 FIP at AAA this year and while he could pitch well enough to stick for two starts, I’m not so sure he’s the answer for the next six weeks.
I don’t think New York will go out and trade for a front of the rotation arm, but you never know. There are some tempting names on the market such as Zack Greinke and Matt Garza who should both be available. I think they have the stuff in the system to trade for either one of those guys. After those two though, there are a lot of solid options. Wandy Rodriguez is a guy who the Yankees have been interested in the past and I have no doubt he will be available. Ryan Dempster and Shaun Marcum are other solid options as well.
Buster Olney made an interesting suggestion via twitter which was theNew Yorklook at Francisco Liriano who I’m sure would not cost too much. Olney goes on to suggest that if Liriano does not work out, he could pitch as a set up man. Some other lesser names include Jason Vargas, John Lannan, Paul Maholm, and Jeremy Guthrie. I think any one of those guys would be better than either Garcia or Warren.
New York is really looking to be a serious contender in this years playoffs and if they want to go far, I think that it would be wise of them to add a starting pitcher after Sabathia and Pettitte were each injured. Luckily for them, this year’s market features a good amount of starting pitching. I’m sure we will begin to hear a lot more about the Yankees interests as the trade deadline gets closer and closer.
Filed under: Digging Deep - Analysis Tagged: | Adam Warren, Andy Pettitte, Casey Kotchman, CC Sabathia, Francisco Liriano, Freddy Garcia, Hiroki Kuroda, Ivan Nova, Matt Garza, New York Yankees, Phil Hughes, Ryan Depster, Shaun Marcum, Trades, Zack Greinke