Some Yankees-related news as things get underway in Tampa..
- Yankees GM Brian Cashman is still on the lookout for a starting pitcher, either via trade or free agency, writes Chad Jennings of the LoHud Yankees Blog. “If it makes sense, I’m ready to rock and roll,” the GM said. Of course, the Yankees already have plenty of candidates for the backend of the rotation in-house, including Freddy Garcia, Bartolo Colon, and Ivan Nova, as well as youngsters D.J. Mitchell and David Phelps.
- Meanwhile, manager Joe Girardi says that the competition is wide open at this stage. While that could mean that the club's in-house position battle goes down to the wire, it could also mean that there's enough time for a new acquisition to be worked into the mix. “The chances that the fourth and fifth starter role will be answered sooner than later are not very good,” the manager said. “I think we’ll spend all spring evaluating everybody in our camp…So, basically, we have an open competition until March 30.”
- Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com (via Twitter) doesn't blame Yankees pitcher C.C. Sabathia for keeping his opt-out option open.
- Hank Steinbrenner isn't concerned about Sabathia opting-out of his deal, writes Wallace Matthews of ESPNNewYork.com. Steinbrenner also says that fans can expect the Yankees to contend every year.