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New York Yankees: Andy Pettitte Likely to Double-A After Latest Minors Start

TAMPA, FL - APRIL 04: Pitcher Andy Pettitte #46 of the New York Yankees throws against the New York Mets in a spring training game April 4, 2012  at George M. Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, Florida. Pettitte last pitched in 2010. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images
Doug RushSenior Analyst IApril 20, 2012

On Friday, all eyes were on Boston for the start of the Yankees and Red Sox series.

Down in Florida, all eyes were on Andy Pettitte pitching in his third minor league spring training game.

Pitching against the Pittsburgh Pirates' Class A team, Pettitte went five solid innings, allowed four hits, two runs, walked none and struck out five for Class A Tampa.

Pettitte threw 66 pitches in the game, 58 of which were for strikes; a very good rate that shows his control is definitely there.

Bryan Hoch of MLB.com reported that following this latest performance, Pettitte will move to to a higher level to make his next extended spring training start, potentially at Class AA in Trenton.

With each strong minor league start, it's putting both Freddy Garcia and Phil Hughes on notice.

Pettitte is going to bump someone from the rotation, and with the way the rotation is shaping out, don't be shocked if it ends up being Garcia, especially if he doesn't pitch well against the Red Sox on Saturday.

If Garcia loses his spot to Pettitte, don't be surprised if the Yankees end up designating Garcia for assignment and either trading or releasing him.

But so far, all signs are still pointing towards Pettitte returning to the Yankees and to the Bronx in early May, and his latest minor league start is another step in that direction.

Stay tuned, Yankees Universe.

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