Who replaces Javier Vazquez in rotation? 

August, 25, 2010
On Wednesday's Baseball Today podcast, my co-host and partner-in-crime Seth Everett criticized the New York Yankees' rotation. It's clear the Yankees have some starting-pitching issues, and fantasy baseball owners have every reason to be concerned. Javier Vazquez is in the bullpen, Andy Pettitte is on his sofa and A.J. Burnett ... well, he's pitching, but certainly not very well. All three pitchers are owned in a lot of leagues -- although they're being dropped in some of them -- so now seems an opportune time to analyze the rotation of a team that entered Wednesday tied for the best record in baseball.

CC Sabathia: Sabathia has a nice 3.02 ERA. The only season in which he finished with a lower ERA than that was 2008, when half his work came in a stirring, end-of-season contract run with the Milwaukee Brewers. In seasons in which Sabathia was a full-time AL pitcher, he never was this good. Enjoy it. The top-10 fantasy pitcher's success should continue for years.

Phil Hughes
Jeff Griffith/US PresswireThe Yankees have no choice but to keep Phil Hughes in the rotation.
Phil Hughes: He's the least likely of the three Yankees pitchers owned in 100 percent of ESPN.com standard (10-team) mixed leagues (Sabathia and Mariano Rivera are the others), and he's not likely to be sent to the bullpen any time soon. Forget those innings limits! What else can the Yankees do? Hughes is their second-best starter, 33rd among starting pitchers on the ESPN Player Rater. (Sabathia is ninth, by the way.) I say he'll continue to pitch well and won't tire in September, although I certainly will be on the lookout for potential arm problems by the middle of next season. He'll end up throwing a lot of innings, if you include the postseason.