Yankees will start the 2024 season down 3 key relievers

scott effross, yankees

The Yankees are a few weeks into spring training and are relatively healthy despite a few injuries to bullpen arms and starting catcher Jose Treviño nursing a calf issue.

The team’s primary starters are all ready to go and enjoying some beneficial reps ahead of the season. While Alex Verdugo did get clunked by a pitch and has a lower leg contusion, the injury isn’t anything serious, and he should be ready to go on Wednesday afternoon against the Tampa Bay Rays.

However, the bullpen will be a bit thin to open the year, but reinforcements will come the Yankees’ way throughout the first half of the regular season, which will certainly give them a necessary boost.

Yankees Will Be Down Three Relievers to Open the 2024 Season

Scott Effross:

Having fully recovered from Tommy John surgery, Yankees relief pitcher Scott Effross required another back surgery this winter that set him back significantly in his return.

At the moment, the expectation is that Effross will find his way back over the summer after last pitching in 2022. Over 12.2 innings with the Bombers, he had a 2.13 ERA, a 79.4% left-on-base rate, and a 41.2% ground-ball rate. He’s expected to serve as a crucial piece in the bullpen down the line, but now that he’s 30 years old, the Yankees would like to get some value out of him sooner rather than later, especially in a year where they are eyeing a World Series.

Lou Trivino:

The Yankees also expect Lou Trivino to return over the summer, considering he is still rehabilitating from Tommy John surgery. The 32-year-old signed a one-year, $1.5 million deal with a 2025 club option. He tossed 53.2 innings in 2022 between Oakland and the Yankees, hosting a collective 4.53 ERA.

However, his 21.2 innings with the Bombers were certainly exciting, hosting a 1.66 ERA and an 83.9% left-on-base rate. Trivino has plenty of experience and should serve a solid purpose out of the bullpen, essentially representing what would’ve been a trade deadline deal in late July.

READ MORE: Yankees send red-hot outfield prospect back to minor league camp

Tommy Kahnle:

Manager Aaron Boone also indicated that 34-year-old Tommy Kahnle will likely miss Opening Day as he ramps up from right shoulder inflammation. This is an issue that Kahnle dealt with late in the 2023 season, so it is not ideal that he’s already managing that pain.

With the Yankees in 2023, Kahnle pitched 40.2 innings, hosting a 2.66 ERA, 10.62 strikeouts per nine, and 82.1% left on base rate and 49% ground of ball rate. The veteran relief arm has good stuff and high strikeout numbers, so he plans to make a positive impact with the Yankees this upcoming season, and they will certainly need his services.

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