Yankees lone bright spot is return of Aroldis Chapman
Although the Yankees were unable to put a stop to their current six-game losing streak, the club received a shot in the arm from the return of its All-Star closer, Aroldis Chapman.
Thank goodness the Yankees have finally completed their nightmare 1-6 West Coast road trip. The only positive to take away from Sunday’s 4-3 loss to the A’s is the fact that Aroldis Chapman looked like his old dominant self.
Out since May 13 with inflammation in the rotator cuff of his left shoulder, Chapman worked a 1-2-3 eighth inning — quelling many skeptics’ fears that the club had somehow thrown away $86 million on damaged goods this past offseason.
Chapman, who struggled in his lone rehab appearance at Double-A Trenton on Friday night — walking two batters and allowing one run in 2/3 of an inning, responded by confidently throwing his biting slider for strikes, while the fastball we all know and love reached 102 mph on the radar gun.
Now sitting in a tie with the Red Sox for first place in the AL East, Yankees manager Joe Girardi somewhat heatedly responded to Chapman’s assertion that the team pressed him back into duty to take some of the pressure off of its overused bullpen — via The New York Post.
"“He said he was rusty. He looked pretty good to me today,” manager Joe Girardi said. “It’s a big power arm to have back. It lengthens our bullpen.”“If you are a player being paid to play, and you are eligible, you show up,” Girardi said. “How many divisions are lost by one game? How many playoff spots have not been guaranteed by one game?’ It’s not ideal to be all the way out here, I get that. He had a travel day where he did not play. All our other players had a travel day where they played the next day. If you have people available who are the best, you want them here.”"
Perhaps Ol’ Joe is starting to feel some of the heat culminating in the season-long losing streak?
Yankees injury bug strikes Triple-A; Gleyber Torres hits DL
As if the Yankees current five-game losing streak wasn't bad enough, top prospect Gleyber Torres suffered a hyperextended left elbow on Saturday afternoon.
However, Dellin Betances can’t shoulder any of the blame while Chapman was on the shelf. In 10 relief appearances as the team’s closer, Betances went 6-for-6 in save opportunities, highlighted by a 19:5 K:BB ratio and zero runs allowed.