Source: Wang rotation spot secure

Updated: June 11, 2009, 11:33 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

Despite having a 21.61 ERA as a starter, Yankees right-hander Chien-Ming Wang is expected to remain in the rotation, a source told ESPN The Magazine's Buster Olney.

He is scheduled to start Wednesday against the Washington Nationals, a source told ESPN.

Wang
Wang
Manager Joe Girardi suggested Thursday that Wang would lose his place in the rotation if he did not pitch well on Wednesday.

"As I told him, it's important that he has a real good start," Girardi said to The New York Times. "He needs to show us that he's back and he's fully back, because at some point, production is important."

Wang has the highest starter's ERA through five starts since 1913, when baseball began keeping track of ERAs.

"We work on mechanical stuff and we work on mental stuff, but when he's standing out there alone, there's not a whole lot I can do for him," Girardi told The Times. "I believe in him, and he knows I believe in him, but ultimately he has to throw the pitch."

He was restored to the rotation after two scoreless relief appearances last month, but his troubles soon returned. Wang gave up five runs in 4 2/3 innings in a no-decision against Texas last Thursday and gave up four runs and six hits in only 2 2/3 innings of New York's 6-5 loss to Boston on Wednesday.

"What I didn't see was enough strikes," Girardi said to The Times of Wang's performance against the Red Sox. "I talked to him and I said: 'We need more strikes, we need quick outs from you, you need to attack the zone. That's who you are. If you don't do that, you get in trouble, because you're not going to throw a lot of sliders and curveballs and changes. You have to attack the zone, and it's important that you go out and do it the next time.' "

Buster Olney is a senior writer for ESPN The Magazine.