1. How will the Yankees use CC Sabathia?
Joe Girardi hasn't made anything official, but he appears to strongly favor using CC Sabathia in Games 1 and 4 (on short rest), setting up a possible Game 7 on regular rest. We think that's sound strategy, maxing out CC's availability in what could be a series that goes the distance.
2. How does the rest of the rotation shake out vs. the Angels?
Since Girardi isn't in favor of altering a winning formula, you'd anticipate A.J. Burnett (paired with Jose Molina) for Game 2, and Andy Pettitte for Game 3 at Anaheim. Girardi said that Chad Gaudin and Joba Chamberlain were possible Game 4 starters, but Chamberlain seems too valuable in relief to switch now.
3. Will they carry a third catcher again?
Seems that way. Girardi liked the flexibility Francisco Cervelli offered, which was evident in division series Game 2, when Molina started, Jorge Posada was used as pinch-hitter, and Cervelli caught in extra innings after Posada was pulled for a pinch-runner.
4. Will Nick Swisher and Johnny Damon bounce back?
Ah, the Stadium Seer feels some negative breezes from the East. Or was that from Damon's four whiffs in Minneapolis Sunday? Both players thrive on emotion, and Swish might've been a little more super-charged for his first Yankee playoff series. Maybe he needs to dial it down a notch.
As for Damon, as long as he's healthy, then no one should worry. Both players were 1-for-12 in the DS, and both men came in for extra BP today with the reserves.
5. Will there be any alterations to the ALCS roster?
It would seem as if Damaso Marte will join the small band of players working out in Tampa. With Bobby Abreu as the only "pure'' lefty, there's less of a need for a situational left-hander to complement Phil Coke. Brian Bruney could get the call, and the Yankees would probably stay at 11 pitchers. Since Brett Gardner is expected to remain as a reserve, fast Freddy Guzman isn't expected to make the cut.