Hughes: Ready for the rotation
Phil Hughes checked in with The Associated Press down in the shadows of George M. Steinbrenner Field today, saying that he’s ready to battle Joba Chamberlain and others to be the Yankees’ fifth starter come Opening Day.
“I know I’m coming into the spring fighting for a job,” Hughes told the AP after a pre-spring training workout on Thursday. “I’m out of the
reliever mindset for right now. Anytime nothing is going to be handed
to you, you strive to be a little bit better.”
Hughes started throwing in mid-December and has thrown fastballs off a mound a couple of times this month. He said that last year’s success in a bullpen assignment helped his confidence.
“I definitely feel at a point where I’ve never been, having the
experience of consistently getting big league guys out,” Hughes said.
“It helps, and obviously winning the World Series also helps.”
Hughes guesses that his innings count could be between 175 and 180 if he makes the rotation.
- We launched a story on MLB.com looking ahead to the fifth starter battle today with a little more detail, and I jumped on with Noah Coslov and Pete McCarthy to talk about the negotiations – or lack thereof – with Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera right now.
- The AP also notes that Jesus Montero is working out at first base. It seems like a good idea for him to get acclimated there if possible, but with Mark Teixeira and Nick Johnson there for 2010 (plus Nick Swisher in an emergency), don’t look for that to be his calling card to the Bronx. Either way, Montero’s big bat will be what punches his ticket to the big leagues, maybe as soon as this year.
- How many miles do you figure the World Series trophy has traveled this winter? Here’s a couple of more appearances on the agenda to pass on from the Yankees… the trophy will be on display at 5:30 p.m. tomorrow (Friday, 2/12) at the Connecticut Sports Foundation Dinner at Mohegan Sun.
On Saturday (2/13), it will be on display and available for the public to take pictures with just outside of the Box Office in The Shops at Mohegan Sun from 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. General public looking for additional information should call 1.888.226.7711.