|Andy hasn't waved good-bye just yet.|
Now, here is the quote that Cashman made to the Daily News:
"[Andy Pettitte has] chosen at this stage at least not to start in 2011."
Cashman then retracted his statement, noting that instead of using the word "start," he should have said "pitch." Cashman further added:
"I don't think he's determined if he's officially finished or not, but he's chosen at this stage at least not to [pitch] in 2011. If that ever changes he'll call us. We're not going to hound him or bother him."
That last statement is a tricky one to decipher, and its language makes it understandable why at first glance, it sounds like Cashman is saying undoubtedly that Pettitte will not pitch in 2011. But if you read it--all of it--carefully, you'll see that this is just a reiteration of what's already been said and noted countless times: Andy Pettitte is still basically leaning towards not pitching. If he hasn't said that he will return, then saying that he's chosen not to "at this stage" is a reasonable statement, but it doesn't mean that he's not going to.
For the sake of any readers who have been privy to false reporting on this via news articles, the blogosphere or on twitter, I would encourage you to not take it all too seriously until you here anything that gives clear, absolute confirmation that Andy has indeed decided to call it quits. I think we can all agree that with so much riding on Andy's decision, every word written is being analyzed and, in many cases, over-analyzed to a fault; we're impatient in New York, and the closer it gets to Spring Training the more "antsy" we become. But we should try not to hit the panic button just yet.
I for one am a firm believer that whatever decision Andy makes, he will show the team and their fans the courtesy of making some form of announcement. There are some people who understand how what they do affects others and he is certainly that person, and I think that he knows how much it would mean to his team and his fans to just say either "I'm out" or "I'm back." Until a formal announcement is made, I'll hold out hope of seeing the greatest postseason pitcher ever, stare down batters from the mound for one more year.
Follow Rasheeda Cooper on twitter: @ra_cooper