Five Ways the Yankees Can Shore Up the 2017 Pitching Staff
Promote from Within
With all the excitement surrounding the Yankees star position players, some of the strong pitching performances they received in the upper-minors are being overlooked. Dietrich Enns and Jordan Montgomery both but up insane numbers in the upper-minors and finished the season one step from the big leagues in Triple-A Scranton Wilkes-Barre.
Enns is expected to be added to the 40-man roster this winter and Montgomery could force his way into consideration with a strong spring. Another possibility is converted reliever Chance Adams, who has a strong argument for having been the most dominant minor league pitcher at any level this year.
Cashman did not rule out the possibility of some of the organization’s younger arms pushing their way into the rotation next March.
"We’re still young but we have other guys pushing their way into the mix, and we’ll see what they look like in Spring Training."
Yankees fans also should not rule out 22-year-old Luis Severino, even after his disappointing 2016. Cashman confirmed he will remain a starter in 2017, and he’s not that far removed from being the top pitching prospect in the team’s system.
"(His performance in) the bullpen is not changing anything for me. That’s where guys go when they can’t be quality starters. I certainly hope that he can be a starter as we move forward. Certainly you’ve got to factor in and keep in mind his age. I think he’s 22, 23. But at the end of the day I have to have patience. I have to be objective that way. There’s a starter profile on him … He will get that opportunity (to start), whether it’s New York or it’s in Scranton next year remains to be seen."
Personally, I’d like to see what the team could get for veterans like CC Sabathia and Michael Pineda this winter and give some of these youngsters regular turns. Severino, Enns, Montgomery, Adams, Mitchell, Cessa, Green, and whatever other young starters Cashman brings in this offseason can fight it out behind Masahiro Tanaka.