Earlier this Spring, the Yankees suffered a serious blow to their rotation when lefty James Paxton had to undergo back surgery. We don’t necessarily care about the Yankees’ playoff chances or whatever around here, but the moment served as a reminder about the perils of this time of year: guys show up to camp, start really ramping up, and then they feel something.
For example, the Cardinals got the same kind of reminder with Miles Mikolas this week, as he had to undergo more PRP injections for a sore flexor area in his arm, and he’ll be on the shelf to open the season. More injuries, especially pitcher injuries, are coming.
I mention all of this as a precursor to the latest news, also out of the Yankees’ rotation:
— New York Post (@nypost) February 20, 2020
Severino, 25, has dealt with this forearm soreness before, but with a loose body in the elbow, you always worry that he’s not going to be able to just pitch through it. Surgery might wind up on the table after further examination. The young righty also missed much of last year with shoulder and lat issues.
That is all to say, with Paxton out and now Severino perhaps not able to be counted on early, the Yankees figure to be digging deep into their upper-level depth for starting pitching options to open the season, despite having a roster extremely geared toward going all out this year.
You wonder if they might look to add a starting pitcher, and, if that were to happen, if the Cubs would consider shopping a guy like Jose Quintana. It’s not that the Cubs, themselves, wouldn’t want Quintana in their own rotation, but there aren’t many pieces the Cubs could move to assure themselves space under the luxury tax this year. So if the Yankees wanted to offer up some actual value for Quintana – while also getting the Cubs under the luxury tax – maybe it wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world to make the move, and then fill out the back of the rotation with a combination of Tyler Chatwood, Alec Mills, Adbert Alzolay, and Colin Rea.
Getting under the luxury tax now means the Cubs would not be put in the dreadful midseason position of having to decide whether to just stay barely over the tax all year (and thus limiting their spending AGAIN next offseason while also having FAILED to actually ADD pieces this year), or having to sell off guys even if they are competitive.