NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 1: Jordan Montgomery #47 of the New York Yankees pitches against the Toronto Blue Jays during the first inning at Yankee Stadium on October 1, 2017 in the Bronx borough of New York City.
(Photo by Adam Hunger/Getty Images)

New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman says the club’s fifth starting rotation spot will undergo “open competition.”

With James Paxton expected to be sidelined for at least three months after back surgery, Brian Cashman said the fifth-starter role is an “open competition,” via Bryan Hoch of MLB.

With J.A. Happ now more than likely to fill out the fourth spot in the rotation, Cashman said the competition will come down between Jordan Montgomery, Jonathan Loaisiga, Luis Cessa, Michael King and Deivi Garcia. 

So whose job is it to lose?

LHP Jordan Montgomery

In his first 35 Major League starts, the lefty pitched to a 3.84 ERA and owned an 8.2 K/9. Jordan Montgomery underwent Tommy John surgery in June of 2018 after finishing in sixth place in the previous season’s American League Rookie of the Year Award voting. He appeared in just two games last year, with one start, and allowed three earned runs in 4.0 innings. Montgomery has a full season of starts under his belt and is certainly the favorite.

RHP Jonathan Loaisiga

In 24 MLB games (eight starts), the 25-year-old has allowed 30 earned runs in 56.1 innings (4.79 ERA). Jonathan Loaisiga appeared in four postseason games last season – three in the ALCS – and allowed two runs (one earned) in 2.2 innings of work.

RHP Luis Cessa

Cessa has 86 MLB appearances, 19 of them starts, under his belt. As a starter, he owns a 4.93 ERA in the big leagues, as compared to a 4.22 ERA as a reliever. Cessa has been aboard the Scranton Shuttle for much of the last four years and should be seen as nothing more than a spot starter.

RHP Michael King

Michael King made his Major League debut last year on September 27 in Texas. He allowed one unearned run on two hits and struck out a batter in 2.0 innings. King was on the minor league injured list from April 4 to July 30 and combined for a 4.88 ERA in seven outings (five starts) in Trenton and Scranton Wilkes-Barre. However, he owned a 2.01 ERA in the minors in his previous three seasons.

RHP Deivi Garcia

Like King, 2019 was the worst of Deivi Garcia’s minor league career – after combining for a 3.71 ERA in Tampa and Trenton, he struggled at Triple-A. In 11 games (six starts) with Scranton, Garcia allowed 24 earned runs in 40.0 innings (5.63 ERA). Garcia owned a 2.81 ERA in his previous three campaigns, but his struggles in his lone Triple-A stint keep him an outside shot.

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