Hughes likely to be available past Game 4

Hughes likely to be available past Game 4

Hughes likely to be available past Game 4
DETROIT -- Should the Yankees be able to prolong their season past Thursday's Game 4 of the American League Championship Series, they expect to have Phil Hughes healthy and available on their pitching staff.

Hughes was forced to leave his Game 3 start at Comerica Park after just three-plus innings and 61 pitches with lower back stiffness. Hughes lobbied to stay in the game but was overruled by manager Joe Girardi and pitching coach Larry Rothschild.

"We think he's going to be available for us," Girardi said. "Not today, but after today, maybe. I think he's going to be fine."

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said that he would not permit CC Sabathia to pitch on what would be two days' rest for a potential Game 7 on Sunday in New York. That would likely mean the start would go to Hughes.