Yankees’ DFAd bullpen arm opts for free agency over second chance

MLB: Arizona Diamondbacks at New York Mets, phil bickford, yankees
Credit: Gregory Fisher-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Yankees‘ bullpen has experienced a significant decline in the standings recently, with pitching coach Matt Blake actively working to mitigate the impact of injuries and underperformances. This has led to several roster adjustments and the signing of new players to stabilize the team.

Phil Bickford’s Short Stint and Departure

One of the recent changes involved Phil Bickford, who was designated for assignment after a challenging performance against the Toronto Blue Jays, where he surrendered five earned runs in just 0.2 innings.

MLB: Chicago Cubs at New York Mets, phil bickford
Credit: John Jones-USA TODAY Sports

During his brief tenure with the Yankees, Bickford struggled with a 14.40 ERA, an 11.6% left-on-base rate, and a 35% ground ball rate. Despite previously recording a 4.95 ERA over 67.1 innings with the Los Angeles Dodgers and Mets last season, Bickford could not deliver the expected value for the Yankees and was subsequently released, later opting for free agency after clearing waivers.

Searching for Bullpen Reinforcements

As the Yankees move forward, they continue to scout for additional pitching talent through waivers, with hopes of strengthening their bullpen. The team’s search is driven by the need to improve their reliever statistics, where even veterans like Bickford have faltered.

Scott Effross’s Rehab Progress

A positive note for the Yankees is the progress of pitcher Scott Effross, who is currently working through a minor league rehab assignment. Effross has pitched 2.1 innings with the Triple-A team this season, including a challenging outing against Boston’s Triple-A team where he gave up two earned runs from a home run in just 1.1 innings.

MLB: Toronto Blue Jays at New York Yankees, scott effross
Credit: Tom Horak-USA TODAY Sports

However, his prior performances, which included three scoreless outings, provide a reason for optimism. Effross is expected to need more time to regain his form after being out for over a year.

Anticipated Moves by GM Brian Cashman

Looking ahead to the trade deadline, General Manager Brian Cashman is expected to focus on bolstering the bullpen, along with addressing other areas of need within the infield.

Mentioned in this article:

More about: