Manager Joe Girardi and the Yankees staff evaluated the entire spring training and came to the same conclusion I did: Phil Hughes should be the fifth starter.
Hughes beat out Joba Chamberlain, Alfredo Aceves, Sergio Mitre, and the recently released Chad Gaudin.
Girardi has been very impressed with the much-improved changeup that Hughes has been using and working on throughout the spring.
Chamberlain, Aceves, and Mitre are all now competing for spots in the Yankees bullpen. Nobody, including Chamberlain, is guaranteed a role. Each player will need to earn it.
Hughes will be on an innings limit this season similar to the one placed on Chamberlain last season. It has been said, however, that the limit on Hughes will be higher then the one Chamberlain had.
I think this is the right move, but a lot of people, including fellow Sports Page Network Yankees blogger Yankees Chic Chat, believe Hughes should have stayed in the bullpen, where he excelled last season.
My argument against that is Hughes has the makeup to be a top of the rotation starter. He is still learning and developing his pitches, but in time I can certainly see Hughes being a No. 2 starter.
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