Via Marc Carig, right-hander David Phelps will start in place of CC Sabathia on Monday. The just-signed Derek Lowe will back him up out of the bullpen. Sabathia was placed on the DL with a stiff elbow earlier today. Joel Sherman says the Yankees will recall Ryota Igarashi for tomorrow’s game before activating Lowe in time for Monday’s game.
CC Sabathia is headed to the DL with elbow stiffness, and the Yankees have replaced him with another innings eater. Marc Carig reports that the Bombers have signed Derek Lowe while Joel Sherman adds that he has agreed to pitch out of the bullpen as a long reliever. He’s expected to join the team on Monday. David Phelps will start in Sabathia’s place on Monday, and Ryota Igarashi will come up to fill the vacant roster spot for tomorrow. The Yankees have an open 40-man roster spot, so no additional move is required.
Lowe, 39, was released by the Indians earlier this week, meaning the Yankees will only be on the hook for the pro-rated portion of the league minimum. The veteran right-hander pitched to a 5.52 ERA (4.47 FIP) in 21 starts and 119 innings for Cleveland this year, though he walked more batters (45) than he struck out (41). He also got hammered in his last dozen starts, pitching to an 8.80 ERA. That’s why he was released. Lowe still generates a ton of ground balls (60.0%) with his upper-80s sinker, though left-handers have just crushed him this year (.412 wOBA).
Although he hasn’t pitched out of the bullpen since 2007, Lowe spent a number of years closing for the Red Sox earlier in his career. He’s familiar with a relief role, so it shouldn’t be a huge adjustment. The Yankees also don’t have to worry too much about him and the whole New York/big market/pennant race pressure thing after all his time in Boston, plus they know first hand that he can handle a playoff-type atmosphere. I don’t put much stock in that stuff, but at least there are no concerns here.
I kinda had a feeling this was coming after we learned about Sabathia’s injury only because it was an easy move to make. Lowe was a free agent with a fixed price (practically free), and a guy who could soak up some innings without issue — he’s thrown at least 180 innings every year since 2001. Adam Warren figures to remain in Triple-A for the time being, but he was the other alternative for Monday’s start and Sabathia’s roster spot. Lowe’s signing is a depth move, another example of an older and accomplished player accepting a reduced role with the Yankees.
Four, four wins in a row. Ah ah ah. The Yankees are starting to climb their way out of that funk from the last few week, but the happiness over this afternoon’s win was quickly snuffed out by the news of CC Sabathia’s elbow-induced DL stint. Thank goodness for big leads in the division, eh?
Anyway, here is your open thread for the evening. The Mets are playing the Braves (Santana vs. Medlen) and MLB Network will air a game as well. Who you see depends on where you live.
Update by Mike (5:31 p.m.): Just to be clear, Sabathia did have an MRI and everything came back clean according to Sweeny Murti. He’s on the DL retroactively, so the hope is that he’ll miss the minimum two starts.
Update by Joe (4:23 p.m.): Joe Girardi announced that Sabathia will go on the 15-day DL. He told reporters that the concern was “low level,” though it’s tough to imagine him saying anything more grave. Mark Feinsand tweets: “Sabathia has felt some minor stiffness the past couple starts. It hasn’t gotten worse but it hasn’t gotten better.” The idea is to make sure that he’s fresh and healthy for the stretch run. He can come off the DL August 23rd.
Via Mark Feinsand, left-hander CC Sabathia has experienced some minor soreness in his left elbow since his last start. He threw his regular bullpen session yesterday, though there is still a chance the team plays it safe and skips his next start. “Right now, it’s a low-level concern … Long-term, it’s not a big concern,” said Feinsand’s source.
The Yankees can downplay this all they want, but they obviously have to take a conservative approach here. Especially with such a comfortable lead in the division. Play it safe, please.
Just a heads up: I’m going to be making a quick appearance on WGAM 1250 ESPN Radio in New Hampshire at 2:20pm ET or so. You can listen live online at the station’s site.
The Yankees have a nice little three-game winning streak going, and they’ve won five of their last eight games overall. It doesn’t feel like it though, it’ll take more than a nice eight-game stretch to wash away the stench of those three awful weeks starting out in Oakland. New York has a chance to win their first three-game series in Toronto in more than three years this afternoon, and here’s the lineup Joe Girardi is running out there…
DH Derek Jeter
RF Nick Swisher
1B Mark Teixeira
2B Robinson Cano
LF Andruw Jones
CF Curtis Granderson
SS Jayson Nix
3B Casey McGehee
C Chris Stewart
RHP Ivan Nova
This afternoon’s game starts a little after 1pm ET and can be seen on YES locally and MLB Network nationally. Enjoy.
You can make a pretty strong case that Ichiro Suzuki is the most popular baseball player in the history of Japan, and with that comes lots of media attention. A swarm of Japanese media has followed his every move since coming over to MLB more than a decade ago, including several reporters assigned to follow on a day-to-day basis, home or away. Dan Barbarisi wrote about that media swarm the Yankees inherited by acquiring the outfielder last month, including those who had to uproot and move across the country with him. It’s the rare article on the media that isn’t self-serving and is well worth the read. Check it out.