Spring Training In September

Moseley is out, Vazquez is in. AJ pitches better and stays in. Hughes needs shorter outings. Andy Pettitte is trying to get stretched out. Ivan Nova is trying to open some eyes with his pitching. Does anyone else think it is March? A good indication of the depths of the Yankees’ rotation frustrations is the rumored attempts to add Ted Lilly and get an exemption from postseason roster rules. I don’t blame Brian Cashman for trying, but it is a pretty amazing spot to be in with 29 games left on the schedule. We all know who would be the #1 starter in the playoffs, but beyond that you could really pick the names out of a hat. Could the Yankees really trust AJ with anything in the playoffs? Last night was better, but consider the fact that he has given up 6 earned runs or more in 9 of his starts. That means 33% of the time he gets absolutely shelled. He went from an 0-5 11.35 ERA in June to 3-1 with a 2.00 ERA in July back to 0-4 with a 7.80 ERA in August. I don’t care what happens between now and October, you can’t give this guy the ball with anything on the line. That leaves the Yankees hoping Pettitte gets healthy and returns to be effective. Praying that Hughes can regain his control and hoping that Nova’s first two starts weren’t a fluke. The good news is the bullpen seems to be really rounding into shape. The 1996 Yankees won it all with mediocre starting pitching and a great bullpen. The 2010 Yankees very well may have to repeat that formula.