The retirement thing didn't last too long, and Andy Pettitte came back to the Yankees for the 2012 season at a discount rate.

Friday night, the lefty said that moments like getting to start Game 1 of t he ALCS against Detroit Saturday were exactly the reason he decided to put his 40-year-old body through the rigors of a baseball season.

"Like I said a lot of times, I came back to hopefully help this club get into this position, to help this pitching staff, to help take some of the stress off the other starters," Pettitte said. "So it's nice to feel like I have been able to do that, whenever I have been able to be healthy and get out there."

Pettitte missed a good chunk of the season after getting hit in the left leg by a line drive off the bat of Cleveland's Casey Kotchman in June and fracturing his left fibula. He started Game 2 of the ALDS in Baltimore and pitched well, but took the loss as the Bombers couldn't muster more than two runs. During the Yankees' 2009 championship run, Pettitte pitched the clinching game in every round.