Luis Severino, who was the Yankees No. 1 ranked prospect after the 2014 season according to Baseball America, will make his Major League debut with the team on Wednesday at Yankee Stadium against the Red Sox. Also, according to Baseball America, he was the No. 35 prospect in all of baseball after the 2014 season. He will be pitching against the team’s biggest rival in his very first start, which means that he will be challenged even more than usual.
He is a 21-year-old from the Dominican Republic who has skyrocketed through the minor league system. In eight starts with Double-A and 11 starts with Triple-A Scranton this season, he has a 2.45 ERA in 99.1 innings with 91 strikeouts, a 0.997 WHIP, 8.9 strikeouts per nine innings and only two homers allowed. In his 11 starts since being called up to the more challenging Triple-A RailRiders his stats have improved as he had a 1.91 ERA, .0929 WHIP, 50 strikeouts and zero homers allowed. His batting average against with the RailRiders was a remarkable .184.
Severino, who is 6’0″ and 195 lb., has a similar build and delivery to Yordano Verntura of the Kansas City Royals. According to Dan Weigel, Severino stands tall through his motion and features a high 3/4 arm slot. “This allows him go generate good place when he works down in the zone. Severino generates momentum through a quirky leg kick and explosive hips and ghen transfers it well to his loose arm which features plus armspeed.”
A spot was opened up in the rotation as a result of Michael Pineda going on the 15-day disabled list with a right flexor forearm muscle strain on Thursday. That was the same day that he was expected to make his next start. In his previous start against the Twins, Pineda did not pitch well as he allowed five runs in 5.2 innings pitched. Based on other pitchers who have had this injury it is likely that Pineda will be out for about a month. He will not throw a baseball for 7-10 days.
He will have the chance to pitch at Yankee Stadium more times than not because the Yankees play 33 games at home the rest of the season and only 24 games on the road. This is also a plus for the team as a whole because the Yankees are 30-17 at home this season and are a mediocre 28-28 on the road.
General Manager Brian Cashman said recently that Severino will not have an innings limit this season, which could mean that CC Sabathia will be moved to the bullpen when Pineda returns to the rotation in about the beginning of September. “Severino will have no innings limit,” Cashman said. “They prepared early in the season so he would be ready for this.”
After losing Saturday’s game 8-2 in Chicago to the White Sox they play the series finale today at 2:10 p.m. They currently have a five-game lead over the Baltimore Orioles for first place in the AL East.