The rotation of the Yankees has had some issues lately, but despite the relative urgency of the starting staff, there is no plan to rush Luis Severino through his rehab assignment.
Severino was on the injured list all season as he worked his way back from Tommy John’s surgery, despite the fact that his most recent illness was a right groin strain that he contracted during rehab in mid-June. He returned to the game on Tuesday, allowing two runs with two hits and one walk with four strikeouts over 2 1/3 innings in a rehab start for Double-A Somerset.
After throwing 30 pitches in the first inning, Severino only took 10 pitches to get through the second and then returned to a batter in the third before being lifted.
“I think an encouraging move for Sevy. His things got a little better over the course of the trip, ”said Yankees manager Aaron Boone, who was watching the tape on Wednesday afternoon. “A positive step for him.”
The Yankees will start Nestor Cortes against the Mariners on Thursday, although Boone said the starter on Friday has yet to be determined. Both Gerrit Cole and Jordan Montgomery are on the COVID-19 injured list, leaving two holes in the rotation, but Boone said Severino will make at least two more minor league rehab starts before the Americans decide what his next move is will be.
“We don’t want to feel like we’re pushing him back for a guy who hasn’t played big league games in nearly 20 months,” said Boone. “You don’t want to take him out of his rehab assignment – essentially his spring training – prematurely. [After two more starts]Hopefully we’ll be able to say, ‘OK, when do we want to bring him back? How strong is it built up? What role? ‘”
Andrew Heaney will start the game against Seattle on Saturday, while rookie Luis Gil, the team’s # 6 prospect per MLB pipeline, will be called back on Sunday after impressing on Tuesday’s big league debut had. Boone said the Yankees have had no other players affected by COVID-19 since Cole and Montgomery landed on the IL.
Slowly and steadily
Aaron Hicks was at homestand with the Yankees this week, and while spinning a club in his right hand while standing behind the cage during punch training, the outfielder could only watch and wait for his surgically repaired left wrist to heal completely.
Hicks played 32 games that season before undergoing surgery to repair a torn tendon sheath in his wrist in late May. He hadn’t spoken publicly about the decision to have the surgery and said Wednesday it wasn’t difficult.
“I literally couldn’t even stop [a bat]”Said Hicks. “It was a pretty easy decision, especially with all the inflammation I’ve had. As soon as I tried to hit it began to behave again. “
Hicks said he’s had recurring wrist problems for the past three years, but the problem got a lot worse earlier this season. He is expecting a normal offseason that will see him return to the season opener next year.
“It definitely sucks,” said Hicks. “I was pretty confident as I went into the year and I was just getting started before it happened. I just want to play and help my team, but I can’t. “