Yankees News: First injury of spring training hits, Luis Severino update

New York Yankees, Clarke Schmidt
USA Today

It was only a matter of time before the New York Yankees suffered another injury, as it took just four days for pitcher Clarke Schmidt to pick up an ailment. Pitchers and catchers report to spring training on February 17, and Schmidt will miss the next 3-4 weeks with a strained tendon in his right elbow.

“He came out of his bullpen (with a) a common extensor strain, which is, it’s on the other side of the elbow, which, I think, in the big picture is a good thing,” Aaron Boone said after Monday’s workout. “He’s had an MRI. His ligament, his Tommy John is intact and fine. But he is going to be shut down for a few weeks, and just kind of going through a range of motion things and making sure he’s symptom free before he starts throwing again.” Boone said Schmidt will be shut down from throwing for three to four weeks.

Schmidt made three appearances in 2020 for the Yankees, pitching 6.1 innings and earning a 7.11 ERA. Clearly, it wasn’t his time to make an impact, giving up five earned runs during his small sample size of innings. There’s still plenty of optimism that Schmidt will improve and take hold of a role in the future, especially since he’s only 25 years old. For the time being, he will spend the next few weeks rehabilitating, but it is a bit discomforting to know an injury has already struck.

Luis Severino update:

The Yankees are preparing to start the 2021 season without Luis Severino in their starting rotation. The expectation is that he will return sometime during the season, but there are no guarantees considering his past two years.

“I’m thinking he’s very much going to be a part of it. When is the question,” Boone said Monday. “Whether it’s midseason, whether it’s the All-Star break, the trade deadline, that’ll play itself out here over the next few months.”

Severino hasn’t pitched since 2019, when he lasted just 12.0 innings. Most of his action came toward the end of the season, and picking up another significant injury during last year’s training camp was not helpful for his progression. Management still believes he can be a focal point in the rotation, but optimism is dwindling.

“Right now I am getting back to [feeling like] myself. I feel like ‘OK, this is how it [is supposed to] feel,’” Severino said Monday. “Right now I’m at a great point.”