The Yankees already have five quality starting pitchers, but Brian Cashman needs to add a sixth option before Spring Training begins.
The chances of the Yankees making it all the way through the 2019 regular season with five healthy starting pitchers are astronomically low. That’s why Brian Cashman knows he has to find a sixth option for Aaron Boone before Opening Day arrives.
Some New York fans might prefer to lean on hurlers currently on the roster. The idea that Jonathan Loaisiga or Domingo German can fill the role of sixth starter is certainly a possibility. However, Loaisiga needs his workload to be managed and German may be best suited in the bullpen. As such, it makes more sense for the Yankees to sign one more free agent.
There aren’t any elite options on the market, but there are a surprising number of quality pitchers for Cashman to choose from. Yankees fans should be very pleased if any of the following five starters end up serving as the team’s insurance policy for the starting rotation.
5. Sam Howard
Howard has one characteristic that makes him very different from the other players on his list. He’s still pretty young. The Rockies surprised more than a few people by letting the 25-year-old southpaw go back in November.
In fairness, he’s only made four major league appearances. Howard also struggled in AAA during his 2018 campaign. However, the fact that he’s a former third round pick that performed really well in AA and AAA two seasons ago makes him an intriguing guy to sign.
Obviously, he’s a guy who the Yankees can invite to camp without the guarantee of a roster spot. That’s certainly worth the effort for a 25-year-old left hander with a live arm. Don’t be surprised to see the Yankees try to make something of the Rockies cast-off. At the very least, look for New York to invite a couple guys of Howard’s ilk to Spring Training to see if any of them can provide real value.