Yankees to use three-man rotation in ALCS?

According to a report by The Journal News, Yankees manager Joe Girardi is considering using a three-man pitching rotation against the Angels in the ALCS.

Girardi pointed to the lighter workload that CC Sabathia faced in September, as well as the longer layoff he’s getting now since the Yankees swept the first round. Girardi said that the team would like to have plan in place for the rotation going into the series, as opposed to just waiting to see where the team stands when Game 4 rolls around. Remember, too, that because of off-days Sabathia could pitch Games 1, 4 and 7 and only have to pitch on short rest once instead of twice.

It’s not a bad strategy, although if the Yankees and Angels push it to a Game 7 that means Sabathia won’t start Game 1 of the World Series if New York wins. That said, it’s Girardi’s mission to get the Yankees to the World Series and then worry about how to game plan for the Fall Classic when the time comes. So if he feels as though a three-man rotation is the best strategy against the Halos, then he should go with it.

If the Yankees are forced to use a fourth pitcher, than it will likely be Chad Gaudin and not Joba Chamberlain, who will remain in the bullpen.

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Yankees sweep Twins, set up ALCS matchup with Angels

Brady

Alex Rodriguez and Jorge Posada each homered on Sunday as the Yankees defeated the Twins 4-1 to complete a three-game sweep in the ALDS. New York will now face the Angels in the ALCS.

“People can say whatever they want about home runs and big hits,” Rodriguez said. “If you don’t pitch and you don’t defend, you are not going to win. The story of this has been CC Sabathia, A.J. Burnett and Andy Pettitte, and all three of them were fantastic.”

“I think we played the same way we have been playing the whole regular season,” Posada said. “I think pitching is just so important when it comes to a series like this. Once you see it, you understand why pitching is so important now.”
Pavano frustrated the Yankees for four years of an injury-marred signing, and for six innings, he did it in a different way.

Setting a new Twins postseason record with a nine-strikeout performance, Pavano saw his cruise turn sour in the seventh as A-Rod continued his monster ALDS.

The reborn slugger crushed a game-tying line-drive home run that struck the top row of the football bleachers in right field. It was the second homer of the series from Rodriguez, who belted a game-tying shot late in Game 2 at Yankee Stadium and finished the series with a .455 batting average and six RBIs.

The Yankees have a long way to go before they’re hoisting a World Series trophy, but they have to be encouraged from what they saw vs. the Twins. A-Rod is actually hitting in the playoffs and their biggest concern over the past couple of years (their pitching) is coming through as well.

That said, it’s imperative that CC Sabathia pitches well to help set the tone for the ALCS. The Angels have one of the top offenses in baseball and will certainly test the Yankees’ resolve. This should be a great series.

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