Pettitte is one of the original ‘Core Four’ who decided to un-retire after leaving baseball and New York at the end of the 2010 season.
Now with Michael Pineda out for the season, Freddy Garcia being demoted to the bullpen, and a floundering Phil Hughes, everyone is counting on Pettitte to be the consistently dominant starter from the past.
There is no doubt that Pettitte will be an asset in the clubhouse but whether that translates on the mound is yet to be seen.
Yesterday, Pettitte made another minor league start and the results were not exactly comforting.
The southpaw allowed 10 hits, five earned, throwing 96 pitches in just under six innings.
Yankees pitching coach Larry Rothschild told the NY Post’s Dan Martin:
“I’m absolutely more concerned with how he feels and he felt good. We have an idea of where we want him to be when he comes back, so the results are kind of a mixed bag. When guys pitch in extended spring training against younger players, you can’t worry about it too much.”
If you look at the Spring Training numbers of Ivan Nova and Phil Hughes compared to how their performances translated into the regular season, you have to keep faith that Pettitte will be better when he arrives in the Bronx.
Pettitte is no dummy and I don’t think he would be doing this if he weren’t sure he could perform. Pettitte would not want to embarrass himself and the Yankees were set on this plan way before all the rotation drama unfolded.
So, I don’t think worrying about Pettitte should be an issue until it needs to be.