Yankees activate Jonathan Loaisiga; pitches at Double-A
On the disabled list since July 5 with a shoulder injury, Yankees rookie right-hander Jonathan Loaisiga made his first rehab start for Double-A Trenton on Friday night.
After only four big league starts, the Yankees were forced to place promising 23-year-old right-hander Jonathan Loaisiga on the disabled list with a right shoulder injury on July 5.
However, after six weeks of recovery, Loaisiga made his return to the mound for the Double-A Trenton Thunder and looked as expected — rusty.
On Friday night against the Eastern League-leading New Hampshire Fisher Cats, Loaisiga threw 41 pitches in only 1.1 innings, allowing one hit and one run while walking two and striking out two.
Heading into the contest, Thunder manager Jay Bell was hoping for three frames from Loaigisa, but a high pitch count changed all that.
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Despite spotty command from his breaking stuff, Loaisiga’s signature high-90s fastball was in full force and encouraged the Thunder skipper, according to NJ.com.
"“He has had some success,” Bell said. “He has pitched in the big leagues and pitched well in the big leagues. It is certainly a boost of confidence. But he is coming off the DL, and he has a pitch limit…. It is not like he is going to go out there and shove for nine.”"
Over the next few weeks, the goal will be to build up Loaisiga’s stamina in hopes of him rejoining the Yankees once the rosters expand in September. Whether Loaisiga’s services will be used in the rotation or out of the bullpen remains to be seen.
With C.C. Sabathia expected to miss at least one start due to his recurring knee issue and Lance Lynn coming back down to Earth on Friday night vs. the Blue Jays (4 IP, 6 H, 5 ER, 5 K in a no-decision), the Yankees could certainly use a stellar return from Loaisiga, their No. 3 prospect.
In the four games he started prior to injury — Loaisiga went 2-0 with a 3.00 ERA, 1.278 WHIP and 21:8 K:BB ratio in 18 innings pitched and flashed all the promise of mid-rotation type arm.