Saturday, June 22, 2013

Nova To Start Sunday

The Yankees send their ace out today to try to get a leg up in this 4-game series.  If CC is able to help them get a win today, they'll then be sending their 6th starter out to try to lock down the series victory tomorrow.  Due to the rain delay and Tuesday doubleheader earlier in the week, the Yankees need that 6th starter and it will be Ivan Nova who gets the call tomorrow instead of Kuroda or Hughes on short rest.

Nova has been the forgotten man since hitting the DL in late April.  He's lost his spot in the rotation to David Phelps and looked on the verge of losing the 6th man role until Vidal Nuno tweaked his groin recently.  He last appeared in the Majors in a 5-inning, 1-run relief effort in late May, and since then he's pitched pretty well in the Triple-A rotation (2.04 ERA/2.69 FIP over 17.2 IP in 3 starts).

The message sent by the Yankees in how they've handled Nova since he came off the DL is that they don't have a lot of faith in him, and tomorrow's start is highly unlikely to be anything more than a necessary spot start before he's sent back down.  But with the way Hughes has struggled and with Andy's back always a concern, you never know.  If Nova tosses a gem (also highly unlikely) maybe he forces his name back into consideration with Pineda still a few weeks away.

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