Via Wallace Matthews -
A.J. Burnett will not be part of the New York Yankees’ starting rotation in the American League Division Series, a baseball official with knowledge of the Yankees’ thinking has confirmed.
The Yankees announced Tuesday that CC Sabathia will start Game 1 against the Minnesota Twins. Andy Pettitte will start in Game 2, while Phil Hughes will start Game 3 when the series moves from Minnesota to the Bronx.
The Yankees did not announce a Game 4 starter. But according to the source, manager Joe Girardi will bring Sabathia back for Game 4 on short rest if needed, while Pettitte, who would pitch on regular rest because of the off days in the schedule, would start Game 5 if necessary.
So, here’s the question: Does all this make Game 1 of the ALDS “Must Win” for the Yankees?
Think about it. If New York loses Game 1, then they have to win three out of four games to advance – and will only have Sabathia pitching in one of those games and that will be on short rest. Sure sounds like Game 1 is a must for the Yankees, no?