Spring watch list: Joba, Hughes, Strasburg
However, as pitchers and catchers report for spring training in a matter of days, there is definitely something to watch in the Yankees' camp. We don't know what Joba Chamberlain and Phil Hughes can do as starting pitchers, as both bring so much promise, but so far their only major league success has come as set-up relief pitchers. Fantasy baseball owners should be watching what roles these power right-handers fall into. The Yankees' fifth-starter slot should go to Chamberlain, who made 31 often ineffective and even annoying starts in 2009, or Hughes, who emerged as an eighth-inning star in 2009.
Of course, there's no guarantee Chamberlain or Hughes will win the job; someone else could emerge from the heap. The Yankees claim Alfredo Aceves, Chad Gaudin and Sergio Mitre will be given the chance to earn a rotation spot as well. They were three of the nine pitchers to start a game for the world champs in 2009. Really, to some degree, all these guys deserve our attention. That's what spring training is for. I know I'll be watching!
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