Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Pettitte: It was Yankees or bust

(photo by John Lembo)

As much as Andy Pettitte wanted start pitching again, he only wanted to do so with one team.

The New York Yankees.

"This is where my heart was, man," Pettitte said while addressing the media at George M. Steinbrenner Field prior to tonight's game against the Pirates.

Pettitte officially unretired Friday and signed a minor-league contract with the Yankees that will make him $2.5 million if he makes the team. He threw a 15-minute, 50-pitch bullpen session Tuesday.

Pettitte said he approached Yankees general manager Brian Cashman at the start of the spring and told him he wanted to come back upon arriving to Tampa as a guest instructor.

While Pettitte won 203 games in two separate stints with the Yankees (1995-2003, 2007-2010), there was a chance Pettitte wouldn't find a place in a crowded rotation that added Michael Pineda and Hiroki Kuroda in the offseason, or that the suddenly cost-conscious Yankees did not want to add more payroll.

Had the Yankees said no, Pettitte probably would have stayed retired.

"Me and my wife talked about it, and there was no considering going anywhere else," Pettitte said. "Obviously, I could have considered other places and got a lot more money...But I had no desire to go anywhere else."

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