Injury not the reason for Severino's struggles

Yanks righty lands on DL with triceps strain, but command has been an issue all year

Injury not the reason for Severino's struggles

NEW YORK -- Yankees right-hander Luis Severino exited in the third inning of his start Friday night, and he was placed on the 15-day disabled list Saturday with a mild strain in his right triceps.

Though Severino didn't come out of the game until the top of the third, he said he first felt the injury in the second inning. Had manager Joe Girardi not came out to check on him, he said he probably wouldn't have let Girardi know about the injury and instead would've kept pitching until he was pulled.

Severino has struggled to recapture his 2015 success all season, but Friday night was perhaps his worst start of the year. He surrendered seven runs in 2 2/3 innings, throwing strikes but not locating them in the right spots. The night punctuated a season in which he is 0-6 with a 7.46 ERA. Despite the poor performance, Girardi and general manager Brian Cashman both contend that the injury is not a persistent one and has nothing to do with anything prior to Friday night.

"His stuff's not there," Cashman said. "His arm strength is there. But the stuff isn't there. He doesn't have command of his fastball, he doesn't have command of his secondary pitches. It's not health related."

As for Severino's prognosis moving forward, the future isn't necessarily clear. Cashman said that Severino will almost certainly make a rehab start somewhere in the Minors, but after that the future is hazy. There is no guarantee that Severino has a place in the big league rotation when he comes off the DL, nor is there a guarantee that he'll be headed to Triple-A.

There's also uncertainty surrounding who will replace Severino in the Yankees' rotation while he's on the DL. CC Sabathia won't be eligible to come off the DL by Wednesday, the next time the Yankees need another starter, so the next man up will likely have to come off the staff at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. One option is Chad Green, who was called up Saturday to work from the bullpen but has thrown as a starter in Triple-A. Another is Luis Cessa, who started the season in the Majors as a reliever but has since moved down to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and started Friday night, putting him on the same schedule as Severino.

"I think we'll have to worry about Wednesday on Wednesday," Girardi said. "There's obviously candidates. But we've got to get to Wednesday before we make a decision."

Nick Suss is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.