It's Armageddon! Or maybe a fight to the death! Or maybe the beginning of the Yankees version of Ali vs. Frazier.
Phil Hughes and Joba Chamberlain will both pitch today when our New York Yankees face the Tampa Bay Rays in Spring Training Game 3.
Manager Joe Girardi said, rightly, that nothing will be decided today.
Girardi's message for tomorrow, when Phil Hughes and Joba Chamberlain will both pitch against the Rays: "No one's going to be our fifth starter the first time through the rotation. It doesn't happen that way. They're going to be competitive, there's no doubt about it. We'll watch them closely, but all these guys need to get their arm strength back. Just try not to overthrow tomorrow. Try to stay within yourself."
All I can say is I hope neither one of these young guys goes out early in Spring Training and gets hurt trying to impress the skipper by doing more than they should this early. That's the biggest thing I fear about this whole Joba vs. Phil competition.
- The "I told you so's" were everywhere when Nick Johnson sat out Thursday's exhibition game with a stiff back. I'm sure the guy knows his history, and the perception that he is a walking pane of glass. I would rather see him skip one exhibition game than hurt himself worse and miss a week or two of Spring Training.
- NY Baseball Digest says if Johnson does get hurt, that might finally open up a real opportunity in New York for Juan Miranda.
- Check out the latest photos of the demolition of the old Yankee Stadium.
- The Hardball Times is out with player forecasts. You will love the six-year forecast for Jesus Montero. Personally, I put zero stock in this stuff. I don't care what the science or methodology is, there is no way you can look into a crystal ball and say this is what a player will be in six years. No way. Still, the numbers THT is throwing around are fun to fantasize about.