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Young Guns

The calls for Philip Hughes to be placed on the major league squad seem to grow louder by the day. As the Yankees anticipate a possible return by Roger Clemens, they are grooming their own 'Rocket'. Though Hughes is on the cusp of big league success he's not the only young pitcher making noise in Tampa this spring.

Cashman's trades of Gary Sheffield and Randy Johnson immediately helped restock the farm system, bringing five pitchers to add to the Yankees' own prospects. Thus the spring training buzz over the likes of Humberto Sanchez, Ross Ohlendorf, Kevin Whelan, Tyler Clippard, Darrell Rasner and Chase Wright.

And that doesn't include last year's amateur draft, which netted three pitchers - Ian Kennedy, Joba Chamberlain and Dellin Betances - who are being touted by baseball people as potential impact major leaguers.
There has been a definite power shift in New York's front office. Individual moves by Brian Cashman may be questioned, like signing Kei Igawa or sticking with Carl "Mr. Glass" Pavano, but the new overall strategy is quite impressive. After years of outspending the Red Sox on proven, if often overpriced and overworked veterans, they have hit the brakes; allowing the Sox to speed on past. Now they are stuck with ridiculous contracts like that of J.D. Drew. The Yankees can compete in the short term with the team they've got and have the ammo loaded for bear in the future. Even if the glut of young hurlers don't all pan out, they will make fantastic trade bait to put the Yanks over the top for many July 31sts to come.