This spring was supposed to be about Phil Hughes and his latest chance to establish himself as a big league starter, but then the Yankees had to go and trade for Michael Pineda so he could hog all the spotlight. St. Philip of Hughes has been piggybacking with CC Sabathia most of the month, coming out of the bullpen to get his work in once the big guy was done. It’s time for the two to be broken up, with Hughes getting the ball today and Sabathia getting an extra day of rest before going tomorrow. Phil’s had a fine spring statistically but no one really cares. He’s shown improved fastball velocity and his curveball was much sharper in his last appearance than it was at any point in 2011, and at least one scout agrees. Hopefully it’s a sign of things to come and not just a March mirage. Here’s the lineup…
RHP Phil Hughes
Available Pitchers: RHP Adam Warren, LHP Clay Rapada, LHP Mike O’Connor, LHP Cesar Cabral, LHP Juan Cedeno, RHP Cory Arbiso, RHP Mark Montgomery, and RHP Preston Claiborne all made the trip and are available if needed. Arbiso, Montgomery, and Claiborne are up from minor league camp for the day.
Available Position Players: 1B/C Jose Gil, C Gus Molina, IF Doug Bernier, UTIL Bill Hall, IF Brandon Laird, IF Jayson Nix, IF Ramiro Pena, 1B Jorge Vazquez, OF Justin Maxwell, and OF Colin Curtis are on the bench and available.
Today’s game starts at 1:05pm ET and can be seen on ESPN. We’re going to chat for the first few innings, so join the fun after the jump.