The New York Yankees are gearing up to face off against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Tuesday evening in a three-game series. The Pirates are coming off a series sweep against the New York Mets, with the Yankees dropping two of three against the Milwaukee Brewers.
Nestor Cortes will take the mound against Luis Ortiz, who has made one appearance this season against the Cincinnati Reds on September 13. He gave up one hit over 5.2 innings pitched but is otherwise fresh. Cortes, on the other hand, last appeared against the Boston Red Sox on September 14, giving up one earned run over 5.0 innings.
The Yankees finally get Harrison Bader back:
The Yankees are returning Bader, finally, starting him in center-field and batting him 7th in the lineup. Oswaldo Cabrera will shift over to left field.
Bader has played in 72 games this season, earning a .256 average with a 30.3% on-base rate. He hosts a 17.8% strikeout rate and 4.9% walk rate. There is hope that Bader can offer a bit more value as a slugger, hitting 16 homers last year compared to just five this season. His hard-hit metrics are down considerably, but if he can adjust to the Yankees’ mantra, “hit strikes hard,’ they could untap some of that hidden potential.
Nonetheless, the Yankees expect elite-level range and defensive quality from Harrison right off the bat, having dominated with Somerset during his rehab assignments.
Yankees dodge a bullet with a Frankie Montas:
The expectation is that Montas will be just fine for the playoffs after experiencing shoulder discomfort after his last start.
Montas underwent MRIs to show any structural damage, but the results indicated he has a bit of inflammation. The team placed him on the 15-day injured list, giving him a few more days of extra rest before his next start.
The Bombers might be able to get one more start out of Montas before the postseason, in which he needs to show more efficient play if he wants to lock down a starting slot in the rotation during elimination rounds.