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New York Yankees: Spending Hal's Money -- Starting Pitching

Masahiro Tanaka May Not Be Available, So What Should the Yankees Do Now?

Yahoo Contributor Network

COMMENTARY | If Masahiro Tanaka, the apple of the pitching-needy New York Yankees' eye, will not be posted by his Japanese team, what do the Yankees do to fill out their starting rotation?

They could do nothing, and hope that some combination of David Phelps, Michael Pineda, Adam Warren and Vidal Nuno can hold down the final two spots in their rotation.

That, we know, isn't the Yankee way.

They could say the heck with staying under the $189 million luxury-tax threshold and make an offer to Matt Garza, Bronson Arroyo, Ubaldo Jimenez or Ervin Santana that they couldn't refuse.

Honestly, Yankee fans should hope they don't do that. Garza, who has had extensive success in the American League East, might be a decent option at the back end of the rotation. Arroyo, who has pitched at least 199 innings nine straight seasons, isn't a dominant guy but he isn't a bad option, either. Jimenez and Santana? Forget them.

What the Yankees really need is a dominant front-of-the-rotation guy. Without a shot at Tanaka, maybe the Yankees should take the low-brow approach, bring in one or two veterans off the scrap heap and see if they can get some mileage. That approach worked with Bartolo Colon and Freddy Garcia, at least for a while.

Ex-Met Johan Santana fits that category. Paul Maholm, Jason Marquis, Jeff Karstens, Roy Oswalt and many others also fit the description.

What the Yankees really need is a big-time starter. If they can't get one this winter, this might be the preferable approach. Get whatever mileage they can out of one or two veteran guys and wait for 2015. That free-agent class could include Clayton Kershaw, Justin Masterson, Jon Lester, Max Scherzer and James Shields.

What would you do, Yankees fans?

-- Ed Valentine is editor of Big Blue View, covering the New York Giants for SB Nation. He writes about the Yankees and Giants on Yahoo Contributor Network.

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