March 6, 2019

Schadenfreude 245 (A Continuing Series)

George A. King III, Post:
Luis Severino was stuffed into the Carl Pavano Memorial MRI tube before he could make his first exhibition start on Tuesday, and thanks to inflammation in his right rotator cuff, the Yankees ace won't be available to face the Orioles on Opening Day in The Bronx.

Eleven days into the spring-training schedule, the Yankees don't exactly know when Severino will reappear on a mound, which is uncomfortable.

While throwing in the bullpen before the Braves-Yankees game at George M. Steinbrenner Field on Tuesday, Severino unleashed his first slider of the day and felt something in right shoulder ...

Boone believed the MRI exam went well, but when your ace walks off a bullpen mound in early March and the test shows something wrong in the dreaded rotator-cuff area, there is a level of concern.
Bill Madden, Daily News:
The one area of vulnerability on this otherwise potentially deepest Yankee team in memory just got a little more vulnerable Tuesday when, after cracking off his first slider in his pre-game bullpen session, Luis Severino felt a sudden sharp pain in his shoulder.

It was enough for the burgeoning Yankee ace to turn to pitching coach Larry Rothschild and declare: "No Mas!" — his first spring training start abruptly cancelled.

From there, it was off to the nearby hospital for an MRI, which revealed inflammation, and nothing more the Yankees are at least acknowledging, in the rotator cuff. Just the same, it's the dreaded rotator cuff. ...

Tear or no tear, however, this is not good. ...

So the Yankee rotation to start the season is now down to three sure things: Masahiro Tanaka (who is always good for at least one trip to the disabled list), J.A. Happ and James Paxton. ...

[F]or the foreseeable future, the Yankees are going to be without the one player they could least afford to lose.

About that possible balance of power shift in the AL East? Not so fast.

Kristie Ackert, Daily News:
This will stretch the Yankees' starting pitching, already thin, to start the season.

The Bombers were already planning to start the season without CC Sabathia, who is behind in his preseason work because of offseason knee surgery and then a heart procedure this winter. Sabathia will also have to serve a five-game suspension for throwing a retaliatory pitch during a game at the Rays last September. ...

[The possible replacements] "are all guys who have come in throwing really well," Boone said. "I would throw Domingo into that, I would throw Loaisiga in that and (Tommy) Kahnle and Cessa ... we're really excited" ...

After a bout with right shoulder inflammation, Loaisiga struggled in five appearances out of the pen, pitching to a 10.80 ERA. ...

German started 14 games for the Yankees last season, posting a 5.57 ERA and a 1.331 WHIP. ...

Cessa made five starts last season going 1-4 with a 6.50 ERA, striking out 13 and walking seven in 18 innings pitched.
George A. King III, Post:
Aaron Hicks says his back is feeling better, but he doesn't know when he will return to the lineup.

The switch-hitting center fielder missed his second straight game Tuesday ... because of lower back discomfort. ...

"I've dealt with back pain before, but it wasn't like this" [said Hicks, who signed a seven-year, $70 million deal this winter].
Eno Sarris, The Athletic:
"They had me throw more breaking balls than I ever had before," [Sonny] Gray said of New York.

It's just they had him throwing the wrong breaking ball.

"I can't command my slider that well," the new Reds starter admitted. "I want to throw my slider in the dirt with two strikes, and that's about it. ... When I try to throw sliders for a strike, I get around it and it's just a shitty spinning pitch. ... I'm at 2-0 and I'm throwing a slider, and either I'm throwing a shitty slider in the zone, or I'm yanking it into the dirt and it's 3-0 and I'm screwed either way.

"They love sliders," he said of the Yankees. ... "[B]ut you might not realize how many shitty counts you're getting in while throwing all those sliders."

The MFY set a major league record last season by hitting 267 home runs last season.
Brett Gardner: "We're going to hit more this year."

Aaron Judge: "Oh, definitely. You get this whole team healthy, we're going to crush the record that we set last year."
Joel Sherman, Post:
Everyone knows the 2018 Yankees didn't win it all despite their prodigious power, and the champion Red Sox wielded a better all-around offense, with fewer strikeouts and a higher batting average.
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