New York Yankeesâ€™ reliever Zack Britton spent most of the season on the injured list after having bone spurs removed from his pitching elbow. He made his return and pitched a few games, but recently, he suffered another injury, a left hamstring strain.
The Yankeesâ€™ southpaw, however, is feeling ready to return after throwing live batting practice prior to Thursday’s game in Seattle.
With closer Aroldis Chapman struggling to throw strikes and on the verge of losing his role, the Yankees could really use Britton in the back of the bullpen. He looked ready by striking out all three hitters he faced yesterday.
â€œIâ€™m ready if they want to put me in a game right now, but there are pros and cons,â€ Britton said to NJ Advance Media on the field after the 15-pitch outing. He deemed himself ready to return, but the Yankees donâ€™t necessarily agree.
The Yankees are â€˜in no hurryâ€™
â€œWeâ€™re in no hurry,â€ Yankees bullpen coach Mike Harkey said of Britton, who has just five games under his belt this season. â€œIâ€™m in no rush and I donâ€™t think we are as an organization. When Zack gets back, we want him here for the rest of the time. Heâ€™ll probably do (a live BP) again in Houston. Weâ€™ll see how he feels, heâ€™ll have the All-Star break and heâ€™ll be ready to go when we get back.â€
While the Yankees certainly could use him against Houstonâ€™s tough lineup, Britton says he is fine waiting until after the All-Star break to return.
â€œI think Iâ€™m in a good spot,â€ he said. â€œItâ€™s just a matter of what makes sense. I know weâ€™re trying to protect the elbow too. Thatâ€™s still something to be aware of. Either way, I think Iâ€™m fine with whatever happens. Itâ€™s just what they want to do. I need to be smart.â€
Should the Yankees bring back Britton for the Houston series or is it better to wait after the break?