Baseball

Yankees opt for Burnett, eschew 3-man rotation

A.J. Burnett will start Game 4 of the American League Championship Series for the New York Yankees on 2 1/2 weeks' rest.

General manager Brian Cashman said Monday that New York decided against using a three-man rotation against Texas or Tampa Bay, which would have required CC Sabathia, Andy Pettitte and Phil Hughes to start on three days’ rest in the latter part of the best-of-seven series.

“We hope he pitches well for us,” Cashman said. “We believe in him every time he takes the mound, but he has struggled, no question about it, here in the second half. But that was then. This is now.”

In the second season of an $82.5 million, five-year contract, Burnett did not appear against Minnesota in the division series and has not pitched in a game since Oct. 2. He was 10-15 with a 5.26 ERA during the regular season, including 4-13 with a 6.48 ERA over the final four months and 1-7 from Aug. 1 on.

SHORT HOPS

Minnesota Twins outfielder Michael Cuddyer says he will need arthroscopic surgery on his right knee this offseason. Cuddyer hit .271 with 14 homers and 81 RBI for the Twins, who packed up their lockers Monday after a three-game playoff sweep by the New York Yankees. Former Toronto Blue Jays manager John Gibbons has interviewed for the Pittsburgh Pirates’ managerial job. Gibbons, the Kansas City Royals’ bench coach, follows former Indians manager Eric Wedge and former Arizona and Florida coach Bo Porter in interviewing. The Pirates fired John Russell on Oct. 4, a day after completing a 105-loss season. Allard Baird is the first candidate to be interviewed by the New York Mets for their general manager position. A spokesman for the Mets says the former Kansas City Royals GM spent most of Monday at Citi Field meeting with chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon, assistant general manager John Ricco and other club executives.

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