Yankees are still missing their most critical pitching piece

MLB: Minnesota Twins at New York Yankees
Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

The Yankees currently sit 10–2 on the season, the second team to reach double-digit wins, alongside the Los Angeles Dodgers. The difference is that the Dodgers have lost four games, and the Yankees have only dropped two, good for a .833 winning percentage and +18 run differential.

The Bombers have won four straight games, and despite having a thinned bullpen and still missing their most important pitcher, they continue to rack up checks in the win column.

In fact, when the Yankees get Gerrit Cole back from nerve inflammation in his throwing elbow, they will be in fantastic shape.

Fortunately, Nestor Cortes and Carlos Rodon have both stepped up over the past two games. Youngster Luis Gil continues to impress, and Marcus Stroman has been fantastic. Clarke Schmidt is still looking to find his groove, but the Yankees are confident he will compound his development this season and find a rhythm.

The Yankees Will Get Gerrit Cole Back

Cole only made one appearance before shutting himself down with elbow discomfort. He complained about difficulty rebounding from the performance, comparing it to a 100-pitch outing in the regular season feels like. Fortunately, he was ahead of the curve and managed to catch the injury before it became more problematic.

This week, the Yankees announced that Cole had begun ramping up his rehabilitation process, playing catch without any problems.

“This is another benchmark,” Aaron Boone said of Cole’s progress. “The work he’s done has gone well. It’s another important step, but there are a lot more steps along the way. We’re encouraged and hope it builds momentum.”

Coming off an AL Cy Young award-winning season, the Yankees desperately need Cole to fuel their World Series aspirations this year. The 33-year-old tossed 209 innings last season with a 2.63 ERA, and while the Bombers have managed to start the 2024 season red-hot without him, his return will be a massive boost.

At the moment, the expected timetable for return is early June and Cole is making great progress with little to no pain.

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