Yankees lowkey bullpen arm Stephen Ridings finally starts minor-league assignment

Alexander Wilson
stephen ridings, yankees
Aug 15, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; New York Yankees relief pitcher Stephen Ridings (70) throws a pitch against the Chicago White Sox during the eighth inning at Guaranteed Rate Field. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Yankees are getting back bullpen support, notably Aroldis Chapman, who was reinstated on Friday prior to the game against the Milwaukee Brewers. However, both Miguel Castro and Zack Britton are also ramping up and preparing for a return, but there’s one low-key bullpen arm that is fighting his way back as well.

27-year-old relief pitcher Stephen Ridings has been battling a shoulder injury for quite some time. Ridings was diagnosed with shoulder impingement syndrome, which has made it difficult for the training staff to fuel his recovery.

However, he made five appearances for the Yankees last year, pitching five innings, recording a 1.80 ERA with a 12.60 strikeouts per nine rate. He also made 14 appearances for AA Somerset, pitching 19 innings and recording of 0.47 ERA, and made eight appearances with AAA Scranton over 10 innings, earning a 2.70 ERA.

The Yankees are finally ramping Stephen Ridings up:

Finally, the team announced that Ridings would start a rehab assignment with the Somerset Patriots on Saturday, meaning he could make a return toward the end of the season, helping mitigate fatigue down the stretch.

Otherwise, the Yankees will look to him as a potential option in 2023 and beyond, considering he still has most of his service time left before becoming a free agent down the road. Averaging out at 97.1 mph with his fastball, Ridings is undoubtedly a special talent that has a ton of untapped potential.

The hope is that he can get a few innings of action to ramp up and showcase his quality before next year. The Yankees also have Michael King expected to return in 2023, which is extremely exciting since the team have discovered a few notable arms this year, including Ron Marinaccio, and Greg Weissert, and acquired both Scott Effross and Lou Trivino.