So, does Phil Hughes still go to the bullpen?

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Yesterday it was speculated that last night would be Phil Hughes’ last start and that, when the Yankees get off this six-man rotation thing, he’d be the odd man out, bullpen-bound.

Now what happens?

As we noted in the recaps, Hughes had a fine game.  He shut out the White Sox over six innings, needing only 65 pitches, 48 of which were strikes.  He hit 95 on the gun in the first inning and then settled into a 91-94 groove — averaging 92.5 — which is where he was during his effective 2010 season.

At the same time, it’s worth noting that Paul Konerko wasn’t in the White Sox’ lineup and, overall, the Sox have not been great on offense for the past week or so. Or, to be honest, for the whole year, really. They’re near the bottom in runs per game in the AL despite playing in a hitter friendly park.

Does he get another turn?  Or does Joe Girardi take that first inning heat and decide that it’s highest and best use for the remainder of the year is for short relief appearances?

This is why managing is harder than we tend to think it is.