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Luis Severino will miss a month due to groin strain

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It could have been a lot worse for the former ace recovering from Tommy John surgery.

2021 New York Yankees Photo Day Photo by Mike Carlson/MLB Photos via Getty Images

The Yankees’ weekend sweep at the hands of the Phillies had the potential to pale in comparison to the bad news that came out of the High-A Hudson Valley game in Brooklyn on Sunday. Former ace Luis Severino was making his second rehab start after Tommy John surgery, and all seemed to be going well until an awkward pitch in his second inning of work.

Severino hobbled off the mound wincing in pain, and had to be helped off the field. It looked bad, and after the game, the Yankees revealed that he had been diagnosed with a groin injury.

The good news is that after an MRI on Monday, Yankees manager Aaron Boone told reporters today that Severino ultimately suffered a “low grade-2” groin strain. That will push his return to the mound back by a month, but it at least wasn’t a tear or something worse. It’s also obviously encouraging that Severino’s recovering elbow was not any part of the setback. Mechanically, he’s fine, and will play some light catch later this week.

Groin injuries just happen in sports sometimes. They’re annoying in the short-term, but are primarily considered a mere bump in the road. Once the month is up, Severino will be rehabbing again and could perhaps return in August (though the team did not announce an estimated ETA beyond the month delay).

In other minor injury news, Boone said that slugger Aaron Judge was feeling better after the back spasms that kept him out of the lineup on Sunday. He’s “good to go” and is in the starting lineup tonight, playing right field and batting second.

Lastly, some have asked about Yankees pitching prospect Clarke Schmidt, who remains one of the best arms in their system. The right-hander has been on the shelf since going down with a common extensor strain in his elbow early on in spring training. Schmidt has been throwing and today, he’ll throw a bullpen with all his pitches. Facing hitters is on the horizon.

When Schmidt is ready to return, he probably won’t go straight to the MLB level, but after some Triple-A starts, he could potentially lend a hand in the second half. Since Deivi García is struggling and Luis Gil only just earned his promotion to Scranton, the Yankees could use some good prospect pitching options to help out in the rotation (or even long relief).