Yankees’ Luis Severino may have pitched his last inning in pinstripes

mlb: milwaukee brewers at new york yankees, luis severino
Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

In a moment that had Yankees fans contemplating the future, starting pitcher Luis Severino likely threw his last inning for the Bombers on Friday night.

Severino pulled up in visible pain from an injury to his left abdomen after giving up a leadoff single to Brice Turang at the start of the fifth inning. He immediately dropped his glove, leaving observers to speculate on the future of his time with the Yankees. He was placed on the 15-day IL Saturday morning, all but ending his season.

A Season of Struggles: The Dismal 2023 Stats

Severino’s 2023 season has been less than stellar, to say the least. The 29-year-old veteran and former All-Star currently holds a lackluster 6.65 ERA, accompanied by a 4.85 xFIP, 7.96 strikeouts per nine, a 65.9% left on base rate, and a 42.2% ground ball rate. This has been a disappointing follow-up to his rebound 2022 season, which saw him finish with a respectable 3.18 ERA.

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The Injury Woes Continue: Severino’s Fragile Health

Luis Severino has been no stranger to the injury list this season. With his latest setback, it’s clear he won’t even reach 90 innings pitched this year. Given that there are just three weeks left in the regular season, it seems highly unlikely that we’ll see him on the mound for the Yankees again in this campaign.

Looking Towards Free Agency: Severino’s Uncertain Future With the Yankees

As the season winds down, all signs point to Severino exploring his options in free agency. Although Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman might consider bringing him back on a budget-friendly one-year deal, Severino himself may be seeking a change of scenery, potentially signing with a less competitive team for a slightly higher salary.

Maintaining Velocity But Losing Precision: A Confident Issue

Interestingly, despite his struggles this season, Severino has maintained strong velocity, clocking in at 96.6 mph on his fastball—actually a slight increase from 2022. It seems that it’s not the speed but the shape and location of his pitches that have been problematic, largely due to a dip in confidence.

A Glimmer of Hope: Recent Better Performances

Before his injury-induced exit on Friday night, where he conceded two earned runs in 4.0 innings, Severino had been showing some signs of life. He’d allowed just four earned runs across his previous three starts, excluding a bump in the road with four earned runs against the Houston Astros the prior Saturday.

The Reliability Factor: Severino’s Consistent Inconsistency

With Severino’s recurring bouts of injuries and performance issues, the Yankees must be pondering the wisdom of further investment in him. Unfortunately, Severino—or “Sevy,” as fans affectionately call him—has proven time and time again that he can’t be the reliable starter the team so desperately needs.