So much has changed since Luis Severino last took the mound for the New York Yankees. It was Game 3 of the 2019 ALCS against the Astros. Lat and shoulder injuries had limited him to just three regular-season starts, all at the end of September, and he was outpitched by Gerrit Cole en route to a crushing series loss. Then came spring of 2020, when Severino went under the knife for Tommy John surgery and the world collapsed due to the COVID-19 pandemic barely a month later.
It’s been a long, grueling path for Severino return, but here he is: The team announced that he would be activated today. He’ll rejoin their pitching staff in a relief role for the remainder of the season. The Yankees made room on the active & 40-man roster, respectively, by optioning Clarke Schmidt last night and releasing Sal Romano today.
To be clear, this is not what anyone envisioned, as Severino had been working to remain a starter for most of 2021 until a groin strain and eventual shoulder tightness set him back. Now, to do what they can to salvage another lost season for Severino, the Yankees will see if he can help out a weary bullpen. If Severino can channel his still-enticing potential into a handful of good relief outings at the end of this tough season, then hey, I’ll what I can get.
It’ll just be nice to see Severino back on the Yankee Stadium mound. His exciting rookie season back in 2015 helped usher in this era of Baby Bombers, and he was vital to the 2017-18 teams before injuries ravaged his past three seasons. Somewhat amazingly, of all the Yankees who were on the team in 2015 when Sevy debuted, only Brett Gardner remains. Time flies.
Welcome back, Sevy.