Yankees starter Luis Severino likely to miss start of regular season due to lat strain

Yankees pitcher Luis Severino is dealing with a right lat strain. (Photo by Mark Cunningham/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
Yankees pitcher Luis Severino is dealing with a right lat strain. (Photo by Mark Cunningham/MLB Photos via Getty Images)

The 2023 MLB regular season didn’t come fast enough for the New York Yankees. The team announced Saturday its third starting pitcher injury of the spring, as manager Aaron Boone revealed Luis Severino would miss his next spring start due to a right lat injury.

The injury will likely result in a stint on the Injured List for Severino, meaning he would miss the start of the regular season.

Severino was in line to start the second game of the regular season for the Yankees. Ace Gerrit Cole will start Opening Day, the team announced Friday.

When healthy, Severino has performed like one of the better pitchers in baseball. Health, however, has been a major issue for the right-hander. After undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2020, Severino missed the entire 2020 MLB season. He’s pitched just 108 innings over the past two years since returning from that surgery.

Last season, Severino made 19 starts for the Yankees. He posted a 3.18 ERA over 102 innings.

Yankees already dealing with depleted rotation

The injury leaves the Yankees thin in the rotation to open the season. In addition to the Severino injury, the Yankees are expected to be without Carlos Rodón and Frankie Montas when the regular season starts. Rodón is out due to a forearm injury, though has made progress and could return in April. Montas underwent shoulder surgery that is expected to keep him sidelined until later this season.

The injuries should provide a larger opportunity for Clarke Schmidt, the team’s first-round pick in 2017. Schmidt turned in a strong performance last season, posting a 3.12 ERA in 57 2/3 innings. He was used both in the rotation and the bullpen.

Schmidt came into spring as a starter with hopes of breaking the rotation. The injuries should give Schmidt a little more runway at the start of the year should he stumble out of the gate.

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