NEW YORK - Newly acquired left-hander Chris Capuano will join the New York Yankees' rotation and take the spot of Chase Whitley, who is being moved to the bullpen.
Capuano will start Saturday against Toronto, with Shane Greene pushed back to Sunday. David Phelps, Brandon McCarthy are Hiroki Kuroda are New York's other starters, with only Kuroda left from the original rotation that was decimated by injuries to CC Sabathia, Masahiro Tanaka, Ivan Nova and Michael Pineda.
"We're going with the guy that's a little bit more experienced. It doesn't mean that Chase won't have any more starts for us," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said Friday, a day after Capuano was acquired from Colorado for cash.
Girardi hadn't known Capuano before now and asked the pitcher what to call him. "Cap" was the response.
"I can't call him CC, right?" Girardi said.
The 35-year-old Capuano, a 2006 NL All-Star, is 74-84 over 10 big league seasons with Arizona, Milwaukee, the New York Mets, the Los Angeles Dodgers. He was 1-1 with a 4.55 ERA in 28 relief appearances this year for the Red Sox, who released him July 1. He had four starts at Triple-A Colorado Springs and Double-A Tulsa of the Rockies' organization, going 1-0 with a 2.79 ERA.
"If you look, at the beginning of the year, he was great," Girardi said. "We're confident that he can pitch extremely well for us."
New York, which earlier this month obtained McCarthy from Arizona, third baseman Chase Headley from San Diego and pitcher Jeff Francis from Oakland, designated right-hander Chris Leroux for assignment to clear a roster spot.
First baseman Mark Teixeira, who hasn't played since Sunday because of a strained back, hopes to play within a few days and avoid the disabled list.
"The actual strain itself feels better, but until you pick up a bat, I'd hate to speculate and be disappointed myself," he said.