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Around the Empire: Yankees news - 5/6/23

The bad news keep coming for Rodón; Cole names his dream rotation; Severino throws three-inning simulated game; Bader got “lucky” and avoided major injury

MLB: Spring Training-New York Yankees at Atlanta Braves Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

ESPN | Joon Lee: Top rotation addition Carlos Rodón won’t be pitching anytime soon. On Friday, the pitcher himself revealed that the back issue that has been plaguing him for weeks is “chronic”, and he will get a cortisone shot next week hoping that it can accelerate his return. For the time being though, Rodón won’t throw.

The southpaw was asked if a July return is in the cards with the news, to which the pitcher didn’t know how to respond with clarity. “I can’t put a timeline on anything,” he told reporters in Tampa. “I’ll get this injection and I want to throw as soon as I can.”

A mild forearm strain first limited him in the spring and delayed his availability after signing a six-year, $162-million contract, but he has long shaken off that injury. The back issue is the one preventing him from making his Yankees debut, and it has become frustrating for all parties involved. | Wilton Jackson: The entire Yankees rotation has struggled to varying degrees this season, except for one pitcher: Gerrit Cole. The ace of the staff has a 5-0 record with a 1.35 ERA across his seven starts and 46.2 innings pitched.

A master of his craft, Cole was recently asked to name his all-time rotation, and he provided an incredibly talented list. “Nolan Ryan, Justin Verlander, Randy Johnson, Greg Maddux,” Cole said.

That’s a remarkable list of modern starting pitchers who all absolutely dominated at their best. Also, Verlander was Cole’s teammate in 2018 and 2019, and beat him for the AL Cy Young in the latter season.

Newsday | Erik Boland: Despite the fact that the Yankees changed the conditions of Luis Severino’s throwing session from Friday—it was supposed to be available for the media but was instead held behind closed doors at George M. Steinbrenner Field in Tampa—the pitcher threw a three-inning simulated game with no issues to report.

Severino has been out since March with a right lat strain. The skipper had said last weekend that the hurler would start a rehab assignment on Wednesday or Thursday with Low-A Tampa, but the plans changed and the team preferred to witness his latest session privately. For whatever it’s worth, he said that it went well.

Since Severino will likely need at least three rehab starts, he should be in the Yankees rotation in early June at the latest assuming no setbacks.

Newsday | Erik Boland: During Wednesday’s win against the Cleveland Guardians, outfielder Harrison Bader collided with teammates while fielding a ball and appear pretty shaken up. He had to leave the game, in fact.

However, and fortunately for the Yanks, he avoided a head injury, was on the lineup on Friday against the Rays and even hit a three-run home run that tied the game at the time.

“I was a little nervous when I popped up,” Bader stated, who believed he might have suffered a concussion. He was checked for one, but passed the test. “I got pretty lucky,” he said. He really did, and so did the Yankees.