The New York Yankees have the pitching to back up their offensive firepower, but new manager Aaron Boone won’t name an Opening Day starter just yet.
The New York Yankees are coming into the 2018 season with high expectations. Not only are they expecting to score a lot of runs this year, but guys like Luis Severino and Masahiro Tanaka want to continue the momentum they had to end last season.
But the Yankees still need to figure out who their Opening Day starter is and even though they have a plethora of options, new manager Aaron Boone isn’t prepared to name a starter yet.
In his defense, MLB is just days into the start of Spring Training and he’s only seen the starters on his roster as a spectator. Also, CC Sabathia, Sonny Gray and Masahiro Tanaka have all made Opening Day starts at some point in their career. Sabathia has 11 Opening Day starts, the most on the Yankees roster, including six in a row with the Yankees from 2009 to 2014.
The easy decision would be Luis Severino, who is coming off the best season of his career which ended with him in the running for a Cy Young Award. Last season was also Severino’s first full season as a starter but he’s not too far removed from being yanked from the starting rotation and put in the bullpen.
This may seem like a big deal, but it’s really not and there are about 25 other big league managers who would love to have this kind of “problem.” The way Boone sees it, he’s got five great pitchers and whatever order they pitch in doesn’t really make much of a difference.
Pitching coach Larry Rothschild will help first-time manager Boone make this decision. The Yankees open the season in March with a four-game set in Toronto. They have three days off in April, but those come early in the month and could affect the decision somewhat.
Whoever Boone picks there’s really no wrong choice in this situation.