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The Week Ahead - Yankees Starting Pitching Edition

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Sorry, Cash, but that's a terrible tie.
Sorry, Cash, but that's a terrible tie.

In a free agent market filled to the brim with players past their glory days,  as well as injury riddled former stars, the pickings are looking rather slim this off-season. In fact, it appears that the number of risk/reward cases out there rivals any previous total from past free agent classes. What makes this so intriguing is that there will certainly be many diamonds discovered in the rough.

New York played it safe last off-season after missing out on established southpaw Cliff Lee by signing Bartolo Colon and Freddy Garcia to low-risk, high-reward contracts that paid incredible dividends. Can the Yankees strike gold again this off-season?

Personally, I've grown tired of constantly discussing C.J. Wilson and Yu Darvish as the only logical options for the Yankees. I hate to say it, but there is no Felix Hernandez, Tim Lincecum or Roy Halladay that's available on the market. Demands and expectations for a "#2 pitcher" that's essentially as good as CC Sabathia need to be lowered or we'll all end up being disappointed in the end. While age and track record each hold their own weight in the decision-making process of signing a player, one will have to be slightly sacrificed due to the fact that there is no 28-year-old with a Cy Young award under his belt on the market. 

Over the course of this entire week, I will be presenting a case for five different starting pitchers that could potentially make sense in New York's rotation in 2012. NOTE EMPHASIS ON POTENTIALLY. These players will be in the following order: Monday will be the least likely to happen of the five and as the week progresses, Friday's pitcher will be the man I find most fitting. 

Some of these players will demand substantial money for their services or more years than the Yankees will be willing to shell out and will be met with much criticism by the community. However, it's worth assessing the entire market in order to make the best decision possible on what free agents to pursue. 

Be on the lookout for the first pitcher tomorrow! 

Any guesses on which five I'll be targeting?

Follow me on twitter @csm5206