Joe Girardi said the Yankees are still looking at this spring pitching competition as four names for three slots, with the decision needing to come soon between Bartolo Colon, Freddy Garcia, Sergio Mitre and Ivan Nova.
“That’s kind of how you’re looking at it right now,” Girardi said. “Anything could change, though. Nothing is etched in stone.”
It’s difficult to imagine a scenario where Nova doesn’t make the team after the spring he has had, and Colon has been better than anyone could have expected.
If you think that Colon has become the front-runner for the last rotation spot, as some do, that could be leaving Mitre – who flopped yesterday in his worst outing of the spring (five runs in three innings) – and Garcia to battle it out for a long relief and spot starter role.
Girardi wouldn’t commit to Mitre being on the team yet, saying, “There’s still decisions to be made there,” but adding that the Yankees “have a pretty good understanding of what Serge can do.”
Mitre, for what it’s worth, had taken it for granted that he’d be in the home clubhouse at Yankee Stadium on March 31 – even if the Yankees don’t seem so sure publicly.
“I mean, I hope so. I don’t think there should be any reason why not,” Mitre said. “If I still have to worry about that, then I’m probably not doing something right. I think I’ve done enough and I’ve seen enough to where they know that I can get the job done. That’s just one thing that never even crossed my mind, whether I’m making the team or not.”
Garcia gets what might be his last crack to impress on Thursday, pitching in a Minor League game at the Himes Avenue complex in Tampa.
Here’s the breakdown so far this spring:
- Colon: 1-0, 2.40 ERA in four starts; 15 IP, 10 H, 4 ER, 1 BB, 17 K’s
- Garcia: 1-1, 5.93 ERA in four starts; 13 2/3 IP, 13 H, 9 ER, 2 BB, 12 K’s
- Mitre: 1-1, 5.73 ERA in five games (two starts); 11 IP, 13 H, 7 ER, 1 BB, 8 K’s
- Nova: 1-0, 1.29 ERA in four games (three starts); 14 IP, 8 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 7 K’s