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Yankees Hope Freddy Garcia Can Bolster Starting Rotation

The New York Yankees have added veteran right-hander Freddy Garcia to their list of candidates for the last two spots in their starting rotation, signing Garcia to a minor-league contract.

With Andy Pettitte apparently still not in the picture, Garcia, 35, immediately becomes a favorite to win one of the two starting spots behind CC Sabathia, Phil Hughes and A.J. Burnett. The other three candidates are Sergio Mitre, Ivan Nova and the recently-signed Bartolo Colon.

Garcia has more recent major-league success than any of the other candidates. He won 12 games for the Chicago White Sox a season ago, starting 28 games and pitching to a 4.64 ERA. He pitched 157 innings. It marked the first time since 2006 that Garcia, who has a history of shoulder injuries, had pitched more than 58 innings in a season since 2006, when he went 17-9 with a 4.53 ERA while racking up 216 innings for the White Sox.

Garcia is a 12-year veteran with a career 133-87 record and a 4.13 ERA.

Colon is a former American League Cy Young Award winner, but has pitched just 48 games since 2005, and has not appeared in a game since mid-way through the 2009 season.

Mitre has a 13-29 record with a 5.29 ERA in parts of seven seasons. He has been a long reliever and occasional starter with New York the past two seasons.

Nova, 24, went 1-2 with a 4.50 ERA in 10 games (seven starts) with the Yankees last season.