The Yankees designated Clay Rapada for assignment right before the season started. He was suffering from bursitis in his throwing shoulder and instead of using two lefties like last season, the Yankees opted to only use one. Cody Eppley made the team in place of Rapada, but he has since been sent down himself. Now Rapada is back in the organization on a minor legue deal.
The Yankees' decision to keep only one lefty probably had more to do with a roster crunch and not because Joe Girardi was comfortable with just one left handed option. Vidal Nuno was very effective this spring, but when Lyle Overbay, Vernon Wells, Brennan Boesch, and Ben Francisco had to be put on the 40-man roster, he was the odd man out. The team barely had enough room for the players they needed, a second lefty was a luxury they couldn't afford.
They needed to trust one of their lefties and Boone Logan was the one. So far in 2.2 innings he's been a disaster. It's a small sample size, but his elbow problems in the spring give reason to be concerned. Right now lefties have a .526 wOBA off of him in 2.0 innings. For his career, Logan has limited lefties to a .310 wOBA, so the team is certainly hopeful for some positive regression, but Clay Rapada is a great backup plan to have. In 2012 Rapada kept lefties down to a .238 wOBA, which was business as usual for his career .231 line. The problem is that Rapada is nuclear waste against right handers as evidenced by a .453 wOBA.
Keep in mind that Boone Logan was also overworked last year, having pitched in a career high 80 games and 55.1 innings, and this signing could be more relevant than it currently looks. According to this rule that I have never heard of before, Rapada won't be eligible to return to the majors until May 3rd because he was resigned by the same team that released him. If he's healthy he'll be back.
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