You have to feel for Luis Severino. Injuries have derailed what was developing into a Cy Young-caliber career, robbing Severino of his prime years and Yankees fan the joy of watching him pitch every fifth day. Today represented yet another sad chapter in his unfortunate story as the righty was forced from the contest in the fifth with a left side injury. The Yankees would go on to lose, 8-2, but right now all of our thoughts are with Sevy.
Severino looked razor sharp out of the gate, blowing an elevated 97-mph fastball by Christian Yelich for his first strikeout. He followed that up with a devastating slider below the zone that William Contreras flailed over to tally a pair of punch outs in the opening frame.
The offense similarly looked locked in, DJ LeMahieu and Aaron Judge drawing a pair of leadoff walks that included a handful of disciplined takes on borderline pitches. Unfortunately, none of Jasson Domínguez, Gleyber Torres nor Austin Wells were able to drive them in.
Sevy faced a bit more trouble in the second, hitting Willy Adames on the hand with an errant changeup before airmailing a pickoff attempt at first that allowed the Brewers shortstop to move up two bases. A walk of Mark Canha put runners on the corners but a strikeout of Rowdy Tellez on an overpowering 97 mph heater followed by a disgusting slider to whiff Brice Turang stranded the pair where they stood.
Oswald Peraza’s uptick in form continued as he laced a double in the second for the Yankees’ first hit. He looked like he might score on a deep flyball by Jake Bauers, but Sal Frelick made a leaping catch at the wall to rob Bauers of extra bases and an RBI. Peraza’s looked so much better in the box after switching back to his leg kick from a toe tap he had been experimenting with. An inning later, New York opened the scoring in emphatic fashion. Judge ripped a single to right, setting up an absolute laser beam two-run blast to right from Jasson Domínguez to give the Yankees a 2-0 lead.
With the home run, the Martian becomes the youngest player since 1901 to launch four home runs in his first seven MLB games. He was already the youngest to have hit three, let alone four.
Severino was cruising by the time he reached the fourth which made what transpired next a bit puzzling. He gave up a leadoff single to Carlos Santana but was still largely hitting his spots. That is, until he made his first real mistake of the contest, missing a high target with an 0-2 fastball that instead stayed belt-high to Adames, and he didn’t miss it, lining it into the stands in right to level the scores, 2-2.
Then came the moment that none of us wanted to see in the fifth. Facing leadoff hitter Brice Turang, Severino gave up a single on a fastball that registered only 92 mph and immediately doubled over in pain on the mound. Aaron Boone and the trainer immediately came out, and it took several moments for Severino to gather himself enough to walk off the field in obvious discomfort.
Luis Severino left tonight's game with a left side injury. He will undergo diagnostic testing tomorrow.— New York Yankees (@Yankees) September 9, 2023
It’s truly a shame to see Severino forced from the contest with an injury. I applaud the Yankees giving him the rest of the season to showcase his stuff, hopefully to find success as a platform for his free agency. It would be awful if that was the last pitch he throws in pinstripes.
What’s more, outside of the mistake to Adames he was really dealing today. Although the fastball was operating a tick or two below its season average, the cutter and slider shapes were the best I’ve seen all season. Each displayed late sharp downward bite, and he was largely able to command both pitches below or to the glove-side edge of the zone. His final line saw him complete four-plus innings, giving up two runs on four hits and a walk with five strikeouts on 70 pitches.
Jhony Brito came in and did an admirable job, tossing a scoreless fifth and sixth. However, it appears he may have been left in a touch too long, yielding a double to Andruw Monasterio to lead off the seventh. Boone went to Jonathan Loáisiga and a comedy of errors ensued. He first served up a single to Contreras to plate Monasterio and give Milwaukee the lead, yet immediately forgot about the runner as the Brewers catcher stole second while Loáisiga held the ball. This allowed Santana to single him home as Jake Bauers’ throw from right wound up halfway between third and home, and the first baseman would later score on an Adames double to make it 5-2 Brewers.
The visitors hung another three-spot the following inning facing Greg Weissert. Canha and Turang got things started with consecutive leadoff singles, and both would score on a Monastario double that should have seen the third baseman thrown out at second had Anthony Volpe kept the ball in his glove. Another pair of singles by Contreras and Santana plated the final two runs of the contest as the Brewers take the series opener, 8-2.
The Yankees will look to respond on Old-Timers’ Day tomorrow, with Michael King on the mound facing Wade Miley. First pitch is scheduled for 2:05 pm ET so be sure to join us in the game thread.