Considering that Wang’s lifetime ERA is 3.77, this seems fair.
And, it’s probably why most Yankees fans think that Worm Killer will be the Yankees ace this season.
It will be interesting to see if Torre names Wang the Opening Day starter this year. Mussina was awesome, overall, last season. And, he seems to have taken the role of staff leader, with respect to his clubhouse presence. Does that give Moose the nod? Then again, Pettitte is a horse and he’s being paid like a #1 starter. So, Andy has a case too.
Part of me says Wang should be #1 in the rotation – for all the obvious reasons. Yet, another part of me likes the idea of Worm Killer not having to match up with the other team’s #1 or #2 pitcher most turns – because it almost makes his turn then like automatic-win day. (Here, I assume that Mussina and Pettitte will be up to the task of tying up the other team’s two best starters on their days.)
If I had to guess, knowing Torre and his love for experience, etc., I’m guessing that Mussina gets the opening day assignment – and the either Pettitte or Wang will be #2.
In terms of mixing up the look for opponents, I would suspect that an order of Mussina-Pettitte-Wang-Igawa-Pavano makes the most sense (since it’s a R-L-R-L-R sequence). Then again, you could flip Mussina and Wang in that order and it would have the same look in terms of handedness.
Spring Training games start in a week. Torre may make us wait until around March 15th before he makes this call.
The best part of this debate to me is that, I would bet, none of the Yankees starters will be upset with the decision. There’s not one of them with the prima-donna attitude that makes them think that they must be considered “the ace” and get the ball on Opening Day.