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2010 alcs

So How Will the Yankees Line Up Their ALCS Rotation?

Brian Cashman announced yesterday that the Yankees would use a four-man rotation in the ALCS, with A.J. Burnett joining ALDS starters CC Sabathia, Andy Pettitte, and Phil Hughes. This isn't much of a surprise: Asking Pettitte and Hughes to pitch on short rest didn't seem realistic, and Burnett, even with all his struggles, is a more reliable option than Ivan Nova, Dustin Moseley, or Javier Vazquez. But in what order will the four starters pitch? Three options, after the jump.

OPTION 1
Sabathia
Pettitte
Hughes
Burnett
Sabathia
Pettitte
Hughes

Pros: The most straightforward option, and the most likely. No one starts on short rest, and their more reliable pitchers throw earlier in the series.
Cons: Phil Hughes, the least experienced of the four starters, would be in line to pitch Game 7.

OPTION 2
Sabathia
Pettitte
Hughes
Sabathia
Burnett
Pettitte
Sabathia

Pros: Staff ace Sabathia could potentially start three of the seven games, and he'd be the only pitcher required to go on short rest. Even if the Yankees intend to go with Option 1, falling behind in the series may change their minds prior to Game 4 and lead to something like this.
Cons: If the series went seven, Sabathia would be pitching on short rest for the second consecutive start, something he didn't have to do in the ALCS or World Series last year. Also, Phil Hughes only gets one start in the seven-game series.

OPTION 3
Sabathia
Hughes
Pettitte
Burnett
Sabathia
Hughes
Pettitte

Pros: Allows them to alternate lefties and righties throughout the series. No one would pitch on short rest, and the veteran Pettitte would be lined up for Game 7.
Cons: The Yankees consider Pettitte to be their No. 2 starter, and such an arrangement would only allow him to pitch twice if the series goes seven.

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Photo: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images; Chris McGrath/Getty Images; Jim Rogash/Getty Images; Jamie Squire/Getty Images