From Keith Law:
For the Yankees, adding Vazquez means either Joba Chamberlain or Phil Hughes will start the season in the bullpen. It probably also signals that the Yankees feel one of them belongs there, most likely Hughes at this point. If the organization believed that both pitchers eventually would work out as starters in the majors, it would be more willing to give both rotation spots and back them up with a lesser option than Vazquez, who was, as you might have heard, the second-best pitcher in the National League this past season.
I do not agree with Keith’s take here, due to the following points:
- The Yankees did not hold these guys back in Halladay and Lee trades to keep them in the bullpen long term.
- They did not go out and add someone with a long deal who would crowd the rotation into the future. Rather, they brought in a workhorse with one year remaining on his contract.