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Phil Hughes out front in fifth starter's race

Mar 17, 2010, 7:58 AM EDT

That seems to the be the consensus after last night’s game anyway, in which he blanked the Astros over four innings. It wasn’t a start — he got the four inning save — and it wasn’t really against major league hitters, but Joe Girardi and the gang were pleased with his command, the fact that he was using his changeup a lot and stuff like that.

Joba Chamberlain faces the Phillies today, and unless he dazzles, you have to wonder if his ticket to the bullpen won’t be punched by sundown.

  1. DiamondDuq - Mar 17, 2010 at 9:07 AM

    This is playing out, so far, exactly how I hoped it would. It’s becoming easy for them to make the “right” decision. Joba is an elite short relief pitcher and while he may develop into a good starter I don’t think he’ll ever be anyone’s number 1 but tomorrow he’s one of the top 10 relievers in the game. Hughes, on the other hand, hasn’t shown as drastic a difference between his quality as a starter vs. his quality as a reliever and though he may also never be a number 1 starter, not having him in the bullpen isn’t as big a discrepancy as not having Joba there. Additionally, no one can predict a guy’s durability but we’ve already seen some “chinks in (Joba’s) armor” in relation to his ability to be a 200 inning guy.

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