"I think Ivan Nova has a good chance to be in our rotation, regardless," Cashman said. He meant regardless of whether the Yankees sign Lee or convince Pettitte to return for one more season.Also of note from the article - on Aceves:
"He can be our number five, or maybe better than that, I don't care," Cashman said of Nova. "I think he's got a chance to take the ball for us every five days.’"
Nova, the 23-year-old right-hander pressed into emergency service when Pettitte went on the DL with a groin strain in mid-July, was outstanding in his first four major-league starts, and less so in his last four, and was left off the postseason roster. Still, his stuff is live enough that Cashman expects him to be an important part of the staff next season.
"If you've got quality arms, I don't care if they’re inexperienced or not, they'll make your problems go away real quick," Cashman said. "We think he’s got a quality arm."
"He's got to earn it still, but he opened a lot of people's eyes last year in our organization and outside the organization," Cashman said.
Cashman also delivered good news about Alfredo Aceves, the right-handed reliever who was sidelined in May with a lower back strain and at one point appeared headed for surgery. But Cashman said Aceves had recovered in full and would probably pitch winter ball in his native Mexico.On Marte:
The news about Damaso Marte, the lefty reliever who was such a vital part of the Yankees bullpen in the 2009 postseason, was not so good. Cashman said Marte, who went on the DL in August with a shoulder injury and eventually underwent surgery, is not expected back at all in 2011.On Chamberlain and Robertson:
Cashman also said the experiment to turn Joba Chamberlain into a starter was officially, permanently over, and expressed the hope that either he or David Robertson would emerge as the replacement for Kerry Wood as the set-up man for Rivera.While I do think that Chamberlain deserves a real shot at the starting rotation - which I don't really believe he was ever afforded - I will say that it makes sense to lay out a role for him at this juncture. Whether or not I agree, it allows him to prepare for a full-time relief role, both mentally and physically. I'm also looking forward to seeing if Robertson can translate his warm-weather dominance into a full season of dominance - he certainly has the stuff to do so.
He also said he has had no further contact with Pettitte since the 39-year-old lefty told him on the final day of the season that he would need some time at home in Texas with his family before deciding whether he would pitch again in 2011.I'm not sure what to expect with Pettitte, and I don't really feel comfortable making a prediction, as Mussina spurned us all a couple of years ago. That being said, it does not surprise me that he's leaning towards retirement at this juncture. After all, he's spending more time with his family then he has in about eight months - that cannot be understated.
"I saw him interviewed recently and he reiterated what he said to me, that if he had to make a decision yesterday, he would be retired," Cashman said. "So we'll just have to wait and see."