Yanks rotation up in the air
By Mark Feinsand / MLB.com WorldSeries.com
NEW YORK -- The Yankees will host Game 1 of the World Series on Saturday, as they open at Yankee Stadium against the Florida Marlins.
Who will be on the mound for New York, however, remains a mystery, even to the two men charged with making that decision.
Both manager Joe Torre and pitching coach Mel Stottlemyre said after Thursday night's emotional Game 7 ALCS win over the Boston Red Sox that they would evaluate the situation on Friday before tabbing a Game 1 starter for Saturday.
Andy Pettitte, Roger Clemens, Mike Mussina and David Wells, the four starters for New York in its first 11 postseason games, have all pitched in the last four days, the result of a rainout in Boston last week and an extra-inning Game 7, in which both Mussina and Wells were used out of the bullpen.
"We don't really have anybody who would be ready on regular rest," Stottlemyre said. "We'll probably wait until tomorrow and see how everybody feels before we make a decision."
If it is one of those four pitchers, Wells is the likely choice. Clemens started Thursday's game, while Mussina tossed three innings of relief. Pettitte threw 92 pitches on Wednesday, while Wells threw 104 on Tuesday and just six pitches in relief on Thursday.
"I think it will be one of the four if they feel like they can go," Stottlemyre said. "I'm glad to have this decision to make."
The wild card is Jeff Weaver, who has not appeared in a single postseason game. Weaver, who started 24 games this season, has not pitched since September 24.
When asked if Weaver was a possibility to start the opener, Torre said, "He could be."
Weaver, who struggled this season to the tune of 7-9 with a 5.99 ERA, said it would be a great honor for him to start the opener.
"That would be unbelievable. I have quite a few bullets stored up here," Weaver said. "I've had success against National League teams, so if that's what happens, I'm ready to go."
Stottlemyre said that Jose Contreras is a "possibility" to get the call, but added that he "doubts it."
"We've been very happy with what he's been doing out of the bullpen," Stottlemyre said.
When pressed about the issue again, Torre smiled and quickly moved on.
"I have no clue," the manager said. "Mel and I will talk about it in about 12 hours."
Mark Feinsand is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.