The Yankees have officially activated James Paxton from the injured list ahead of today’s matinee against the Padres. Paxton is scheduled to start against Padres rookie standout Chris Paddack. In order to make room on the 25-man roster for Paxton, the Yankees optioned reliever Joe Harvey to Triple-A.
This ends a nearly four-week term on the IL for the left-hander, who went down with a left knee ailment in early-May. Paxton made a rehab outing last week, tossing 55 pitches across four innings, and reported some discomfort in the knee. The 30-year-old indicated that he sees the pain as manageable and that he doesn’t believe a return to pitching will make the injury worse.
Paxton looked mostly dominant in his time in pinstripes before injury. He maintained a 3.11 ERA, good for a 144 ERA+, in seven starts, striking out 52 batters in 37.2 innings. He will likely face something of a pitch count in his first start back against San Diego.
We will see whether bringing Paxton back into the fold even though he still feels some pain in his knee will prove salient. Hopefully, Paxton is right, and he will continue to produce at a high level in spite of discomfort. The Yankees surely could use Paxton back performing at his peak, with a rotation and roster that has been battered by injury at every turn.