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Yankees 2019 Roster Report Card: The August relievers

The Yankees relied on several relievers to get them through August.

MLB: Oakland Athletics at New York Yankees Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

In 2019, MLB’s new trade deadline rules went into effect. July 31st turned into a hard deadline in terms of trading major league players. Teams still had the ability to make trades after that, but only for minor league players who hadn’t been promoted to the majors during the season. Additionally, any player designated for assignment could be claimed on waivers. The Yankees took advantage of the new rules by bringing in a boatload of relievers to help them through the final stretch of the season.

Joe Mantiply

Grade: I

Statistics: 3 IP, 9.00 ERA, 8.21 FIP, 6.00 K/9, 6.00 BB/9, 3.00 HR/9, -0.1 fWAR

The Yankees hung Mantiply out to dry during a bullpen game against the Orioles in mid-August. During his three innings of work, he surrendered a two-run bomb to Trey Mancini. He was sent to Triple-A after that outing and failed to make it into another big league game.

Tyler Lyons

Grade: I

Statistics: 8.2 IP, 4.15 ERA, 5.98 FIP, 12.46 K/9, 2.08 BB/9, 3.12 HR/9, 0.0 fWAR

The lefty reliever had terrific strikeout numbers, but was clobbered by home runs. He gave up a solo shot to Shin-Soo Choo in a game the Bombers were shut out of, a walk-off dinger to Bo Bichette in the 12th inning, and was taken deep by Billy McKinney during his two-homer game.

Interestingly, Lyons was the only pitcher of this group to crack the postseason roster. He pitched well, too! Through 1.2 innings, he didn’t surrender a hit, didn’t walk a batter, and notched four strikeouts. He elected free agency rather than accept outright assignment to Triple-A when the season ended.

Ryan Dull

Grade: I

Statistics: 2.1 IP, 19.29 ERA, 3.64 FIP, 15.43 K/9, 11.57 BB/9, 0.00 HR/9, 0.0 fWAR

Small sample alert, but Dull was tagged for five earned runs during 2.1 innings of work. They finally designated him for assignment on September 15th, and he was DFA’d again by the Blue Jays before the season ended.

Cory Gearrin

Grade: C+

Statistics: 14 IP, 4.50 ERA, 4.79 FIP, 5.14 K/9, 2.57 BB/9, 1.29 HR/9, 0.0 fWAR

Despite being left off the postseason roster, Gearrin got the most work of these four relievers. He was probably the most memorable if only because of his toe tap. On August 27th against Seattle, there ended up being a lengthy discussion with the home plate umpire about his delivery during the sixth inning. He was asked to take some practice pitches in the middle of the inning, and a balk was called after play resumed.