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If you are a starting pitcher for the New York Yankees, chances are you are on the disabled list.
Heading into the season, the rotation consisted of CC Sabathia, Hiroki Kuroda, Ivan Nova, Masahiro Tanaka and Michael Pineda. Since then, a lot has changed.
Nova was the first to go down when it was discovered he would need season-ending Tommy John surgery. Pineda, in the midst of a suspension, got hurt and has had setback after setback. Sabathia is for all intents and purposes done for the year. Tanaka became the team's ace, the one ray of hope, before a partial tear to his ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) sidelined him for a minimum of six weeks and put him at risk of Tommy John surgery.
Now, only Kuroda remains.
In the meantime, the Yankees have relied on the likes of David Phelps, Vidal Nuno, Chase Whitley and Shane Greene to fill in. Veterans Brandon McCarthy and Jeff Francis were picked up, but the two are back-of-the-rotation starters at best. Only five games out of first place, the Yankees are still in this race, but they will need some more established arms.
The question is: Who? Starting pitching comes at a premium, and the Yankees unfortunately posses few premium prospects. One asset New York does have is money, an asset that Fox Sports' Jon Morosi says the team should use in an attempt to acquire Cole Hamels from the Phillies. Hamels is due to make $96 million over the next four years, money that a Philadelphia team in need of a rebuild would love to shed.
Another option out of the City of Brotherly Love would be Cliff Lee, a pitcher the Yankees have gone after numerous times. He has about $50 million left on his deal but will not be off the DL until July 21. He should make two starts before the deadline and would likely come cheaper than his teammate thanks to his age and injury concerns.
Cheaper and less risky options for the Yankees could include former Bronx Bombers Ian Kennedy, A.J. Burnett and Bartolo Colon, as well as the Rockies' Jorge De La Rosa.