Depth in starting rotation a priority for Cashman

Depth in starting rotation a priority for Cashman

NEW YORK -- Starting-pitching depth remains at the top of Brian Cashman's shopping list as the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline approaches, the Yankees general manager said on Friday.

"Trying to acquire starting-pitching depth is important, period -- whether it's tomorrow or by the Deadline or even after the Deadline," Cashman said. "In the meantime, the people who are getting the ball are obviously going to try to make every opportunity while they have it."

The Yankees are missing 80 percent of their Opening Day rotation, with only Hiroki Kuroda remaining from a group that once included CC Sabathia, Ivan Nova, Michael Pineda and Masahiro Tanaka.

Cashman has shown willingness to make smaller upgrades when possible to this point; Brandon McCarthy was acquired from the D-backs in exchange for Vidal Nuno, and David Huff was added to the roster as an improvement over long reliever Alfredo Aceves.

In the meantime, the Yankees do feel urgency to reinforce a rotation currently comprised by David Phelps, McCarthy, Kuroda, Shane Greene and Chase Whitley.

"Some guys have really stepped up for us," Cashman said. "Can they maintain it? That's obviously the one question, and obviously we're more vulnerable because we can't afford any more injuries."

Cashman also noted that the organization will not pursue infielder Dan Uggla, who was granted his release on Friday by the Braves. The 34-year-old Uggla hit .162 with two home runs and 40 strikeouts in 145 plate appearances.

"I don't see where he'd fit, to be honest," Cashman said.

Bryan Hoch is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and read his MLBlog, Bombers Beat. Jamal Collier is an associate reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.