Monday, December 1, 2008

Andy Pettitte could fill a rotation spot

*** UPDATE ***
Maybe not. Joe Torre says that Pettitte's unlikely to come, and that his goal is to still be a Yankee. Nothing official has happened anywhere, though, so stay tuned.


With so much talk on who is leaving the rotation (Brad Penny, Derek Lowe, Greg Maddux) and if guys like C.C. Sabathia and Randy Johnson will be offered deals, one name has emerged as a possible fit: Andy Pettitte.

Unless you know absolutely nothing about Joe Torre and Pettitte, then it's hardly worth mentioning the time those 2 spent together in New York. Take away Pettitte's 3 year stop in Houston, and Torre was his manager practically his whole career. Now that he's a free agent, a reunion seems like a good possibility.

Pettitte will turn 37 coming May, and he will be entering his 15th season in the Bigs. Last year with the Yankees, he was 14-14, 204 IP, 4.54 ERA, 1.41 WHIP, 158 K. That's the highest ERA he's had since a 4.70 spot in 1999. On his career, he's at 3.89.

This could make sense for a few reasons. One, they need a damn pitcher! With likely only 3 guys returning to the rotation (Chad Billingsley, Clayton Kershaw, and Hiroki Kuroda), it would be nice to add another quality arm. Two, it would be great for young guys like Kershaw to learn from someone as good as Pettitte.

While his numbers dipped last year, I think a return to the National League would do him some good. Take away his injury-plagued 2004 season, and he had wins of 17 and 14 in '05 and '06 with the Astros. Pitching at Dodger Stadium and in the NL West against mediocre teams would be a nice fit.

So, chalk this up as another rumor for now (on top of all the others), but this does seem to have some legs underneath it. We shall see.

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