The New York Yankees faced off against the Philadelphia Phillies on Sunday and allowed some of their developing prospects get some playing time.

Among the crop of prospects were Ivan Nova, Dellin Betances and Jesus Montero.

Nova and Betances are two pitchers looking for a shot to pitch in the Major League rotation for the Yankees. The Yankees have two slots open and are looking for a top performer this spring to fill it.

Trading for a big-name starting pitcher is among the options that the Yankees have, but they are currently not leaning towards that approach. There have been reports that they are keeping their eyes on at least one solid American League pitcher, and that is Francisco Liriano of the Minnesota Twins.

The Twins have Liriano on the trading block, but are looking for prospects in return from any team willing to make an offer. The Yankees showed today that they have a few pieces that they can add to the puzzle and possibly make a blockbuster move sometime soon.

Nova, with two scoreless innings of work, showed scouts today that he can start off a game very well. Only time will tell if he can keep it up for five or six innings at a time.

Betances is a prospect that the front office may not be ready to give up on. He has a ton of upside and his stuff against the Phillies was dynamite. He was lighting up the radar guns with his fastball. His delivery scared a few people because it looked like it might be putting a bit too much strain on his arm, but that is something that can be closely examined with a good pitching coach. 

It has been said several times that Jesus Montero is untouchable and he very well may be, but he showed that he still has some room to improve his swing. He had an RBI in the game and looked good catching Nova. The Yankees will most likely not package him in any deal this season. 

As much as it pains fans to realize, Jorge Posada will not be around too much longer. He is headed toward the end of his career and may have one or two more seasons left in the tank after 2011. It is too early to pinpoint exactly when he may be calling it quits, but Montero is the next best option that the Yankees have.

Posada has taken on the role of designated hitter in the lineup and very soon may be more of a mentor to Montero than he has been in the past. 

Liriano is the Yankees best option in case all else fails this spring. Packaging Nova, Betances and Montero in one deal would hurt the Yankees. That is not the solution.

This spring, the Yankees’ plan should be to display the talent that their prospects have and then mix and match for a deal.

They should avoid pressing the panic button and throwing away all their best young talent. 

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