Andy Pettitte has retired and then unretired before, but Yankees general manager Brian Cashman told Andy McCullough of the Newark Star Ledger that he won’t try to change the 41-year-old left-hander’s mind because “I know that I won’t be able to convince him like I’ve done in the past.”
On the other hand, manager Joe Girardi has previously said–somewhat jokingly, I’m sure–that he’ll definitely give Mariano Rivera a call this winter just to see if he can talk the future Hall of Famer into coming back for another season.
Pettitte has certainly seen his performance slip more than Rivera has, but he’s still an effective mid-rotation starter with a 3.88 ERA and 123/.46 K/BB ratio in 176 innings this season. Pettitte, who makes his home in Texas, will take the mound for the final time in Houston this weekend.
For the past few weeks we’ve been previewing the 2017 season. Here, in handy one-stop-shopping form, is our package of previews from the American League East
Boston may have the most talent and, in Mookie Betts, the best player. The Yankees have the best farm system. Baltimore has all the dingers and the best closer. Toronto may have the best collection of heels, at least in the view of fans of the other AL East teams. The Rays have the best . . . hmm. I’ll get back to you on that.
Anyway, here are our previews for the American League East:
Boston Red Sox
Toronto Blue Jays
New York Yankees
Tampa Bay Rays
Mets manager Terry Collins said on Wednesday, “It’s unlikely that [Steven Matz] will start the season with us.” The final spot in the Mets’ starting rotation will go to either Zack Wheeler or Seth Lugo, Newsday’s Marc Carig reports.
On Wheeler’s innings limit, assistant GM John Ricco said, “There’s going to be some number but we don’t exactly know what that is.” Wheeler missed the last two seasons after undergoing Tommy John surgery.
Neither Wheeler nor Lugo have had terrific springs as each carries a 5.11 and 5.56 Grapefruit League ERA, respectively. However, Carig notes that Wheeler has impressed simply by appearing healthy and brandishing a fastball that once again sits in the mid- to high-90’s. Lugo, meanwhile, proved crucial to the Mets last year, posting a 2.67 ERA across eight starts and nine relief appearances.