Yankees designate veteran reliever for assignment to make room on 40-man roster

MLB: Spring Training-New York Yankees at Detroit Tigers
Credit: Mike Watters-USA TODAY Sports

With the Yankees calling up Tanner Tully, they needed to make room on their 40-man roster, and that requires either placing a player on the 60-day IL or placing them on waivers. In this instance, they’ve chosen to DFA veteran left-hander Nick Ramirez, whom the Yankees featured heavily in the bullpen last season. Across 40.2 innings last season, the 34-year-old southpaw posted a 2.66 ERA and 3.87 xERA, eating innings at the backend of the bullpen in lower-leverage situations. It’s a surprising move seeing how low his ERA was, but this wouldn’t be the first time the team has DFA’d a low-leverage bullpen arm.

The move will correspond with their decision to call up Tanner Tully, who was not on the 40-man roster initially and will now join the team in Houston as they continue their four-game set against the Astros.

Nick Ramirez Designated For Assignment by the Yankees

nick ramirez, yankees

Last season was a strong one for veteran left-hander Nick Ramirez, who is now entering his age-34 season, as he posted a strong ERA and got some run in the bullpen due to injuries. He’s a soft-tossing lefty, similar to Tanner Tully, but the Yankees needed to make a tough decision and he’s the unfortunate roster casualty.

One would imagine that he’d be scooped up off of waivers by another team, where the Yankees could then choose to work out a trade with that team for his services. It’s unclear whether he would or not accept his outright assignment or not, which would keep him in the organization.

Baseball is a business, and the Yankees know that they can cut ties with Nick Ramirez at no expense to their roster since he might not have been their first or second option in the situation where they have an injury. Dennis Santana had a strong Spring Training and currently doesn’t hold a 40-man spot, which could come into play if the Yankees choose to send down Tanner Tully after using him, similarly to what they did with Clayton Beeter.

READ MORE: Yankees promote left-handed starter to fill out bullpen, send down rookie after debut

MLB: Spring Training-New York Yankees at New York Mets
Credit: Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports

The Bronx Bombers have been known for their excellent bullpens, and that’s because they do a great job of scouting pitchers and identifying which pitch shapes are most desirable. Last season they finished with the best bullpen ERA in the game (3.34) and that’s a reflection of what’s been a rock-solid unit for years now. Even with some of the injuries they’ve suffered, their reliever groups have remained top-notch, and that should be factored into any conversation about decisions the Yankees make with their bullpen.

After using Clayton Beeter yesterday, the Yankees wanted to make sure they have a fresh arm and give the young starter a chance to build up for his Triple-A season as a starter. He wouldn’t have been available tonight since he they were not going to have him throw on back-to-back days as he’s been on a starter’s schedule since being traded here at the 2022 trade deadline.

Tanner Tully can provide them with some much-needed length, therefore he was a logical choice for a short-notice promotion, as Cody Poteet already made a start earlier today. Since Poteet is on their 40-man roster, it wouldn’t have taken much to get him to the big leagues, but given that he won’t be available for the next five days, the Yankees chose not to take him off of his throwing schedule.

Tonight’s game starts at 7:15 EST, with Marcus Stroman taking the mound for the Yankees against Astros’ right-hander Hunter Brown.

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