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Cashman: Warren Has 'Secretariat'-Like Lead In Battle For No. 5 Spot In Yankees' Rotation

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- If you interpret the words of general manager Brian Cashman, the fifth spot in the Yankees' rotation looks like it is Adam Warren's to lose.

Warren, a converted reliever, has left little doubt so far this spring that he's the man for the job.

"I think there's a predictable favorite," Cashman told reporters on Wednesday morning. "There's a Secretariat right now in this race for me that's got a number of lengths ahead of the field."

The 27-year-old right-hander is in the driver's seat because he's been very good this spring, while his main competition for the job, Esmil Rogers, has struggled of late.

Warren is 2-0 with a 2.77 ERA in four starts. He has six strikeouts and no walks in 13 innings. After allowing four earned runs over 6 1/3 innings, spanning his last two starts, Rogers appears ticketed for the bullpen once the team heads north.

"Warren has certainly got a big lead in this, but we don't have to make that decision today," Cashman said. "When you're running the race, someone is certainly ahead of the field. Things can change radically all the time. We have to stay healthy, but if we had to make a call today, it would obviously have to be Warren via the competition."

Warren, who will make his next start Thursday against Tampa Bay in Port Charlotte, Florida, went 3-6 with a 2.97 ERA in 69 appearances last season, serving primarily as the seventh inning set-up man.

The Yankees' projected rotation right now looks like it will be Masahiro Tanaka, Michael Pineda, CC Sabathia, Nathan Eovaldi and Warren.

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