The New York Yankees weren’t able to utilize one of their best relief pitchers in Dellin Betances this past season, at the expense of a shoulder injury and torn Achilles upon his return.
Getting him back on track in 2020 is now the priority, but will he be the same player after a significant Achilles injury? That’s the question that must be answered. He pitched just 0.2 innings with two strikeouts this year before going down, which gives us a tiny sample size to work off of, but his past success speaks for itself.
Reviewing Dellin Betances’ injury history in 2019:
The relief pitcher went down with a shoulder impingement during the preseason for the Yankees to start his 2019 campaign. He then suffered a bone spur in his right shoulder, which kept him out for the entire regular season before his short return resulting in a torn Achilles. In what was a great showing of two strikeouts on September 15, his tenure with the Yankees possibly came to an end.
Having him during the postseason would have given the Bombers a huge boost, possibly helping them reach the World Series. Fatigue unfortunately set into pitchers like Chad Green, which ultimately cost the Yanks a chance at climbing back into the series against the Houston Astros down 1-3.
The New York Yankees need to make a logical decision with Betances:
In a contract year, Betances’ worst dreams came true. His value undoubtedly took a hit, and his next contract won’t be nearly as lucrative. However, he will likely earn a pretty penny on the open market, nonetheless. He is the only pitcher in MLB history to record five straight 100-strikeout seasons as a relief arm out of the bullpen. At 31-yeard-old, though, his velocity is becoming a concern and has taken a dip. That could play a significant part in the Yankees’ decision to part ways and let Betances walk in free agency.
Once we find out the extent of his injury and if it will affect his velocity, determining if he’s worth re-signing will be much easier. The Yankees and other teams will want to see him in live-action before making any determination, and general manager Brian Cashman might be better off saving the money and allocating it towards the starting pitching rotation, regardless.