The Yankees Aren't Done Sifting Through the Used Pitcher Pile

Kevin Millwood may be the next veteran in the mix for a rotation job

David Wells is hanging around Yankees camp in Tampa right now and the Yankees are telling everyone he's there as an instructor.

Seeing as how he's turning 48-years-old in May, that makes a bit of sense. The fact that he was never a player that you'd hold up as a bright shining example for the next generation makes it hard to swallow that the Yankees want him teaching Dellin Betances or David Phelps much about how to conduct yourself as a major leaguer. 

That makes us wonder if Wells isn't there as a break glass in case of emergency option for the fifth starter spot. The tongue is pretty firmly planted in cheek, but, deep down, wouldn't you rather have Boomer out there on the hill than Sergio Mitre

Maybe that's a stretch, but it certainly looks like the Yankees are going to turn over every other stone in the game before settling on a pitcher for the final spot in the rotation this season. The latest retread to come up for examination is Kevin Millwood, who went 4-16 with a 5.10 ERA for the Orioles last season. That was the third year in the last four that Millwood finished with an ERA north of 5, a pretty good indication of what kind of pitcher he is at this point in his career. 

It's also a pretty good indication of what kind of straits the Yankees are in when it comes to that last starting pitcher. You can argue all you want about the benefits of having options, but right now the Yankees cupboard is totally bare. You've got the underwhelming Mitre battling Freddy Garcia, Bartolo Colon and a slew of youngsters. Assuming Ivan Nova holds down the fourth starter job, Joe Girardi is going to want a veteran. 

That means Garcia, who is okay when he throws 89-90 miles an hour but often throws 83-84, adn Colon, who apparently spent time on the Joba Chamberlain dietary plan this winter, are the best choices. Millwood isn't much worse than either of them which means he's got as good a shot as any to be in pinstripes this season. 

Of course, the same could be said of Wells, which is a pretty striking commentary on a team with a $200-million-plus budget.   

Josh Alper is a writer living in New York City and is a contributor to and in addition to his duties for You can follow him on Twitter.

Copyright FREEL - NBC Local Media
Contact Us