Yankees Dellin Betances to make season debut vs. Toronto
One night after the Yankees went through five relievers on their way to a 6-5 loss to the Blue Jays in 12 innings, it was announced Dellin Betances would join the team in Sunday’s series finale in Toronto.
Hours before Tyler Lyons allowed a 12th inning walk-off home run to rookie sensation Bo Bichette, Yankees four-time All-Star Dellin Betances finished up his final rehab outing for Double-A Trenton.
Betances helped the Thunder seal their fourth Eastern League Championship as the 31-year-old right-hander pitched the sixth inning in relief of starter Rony Garcia, and allowed one run (a homer) on two hits — striking out one.
Throwing 10-of-16 pitches for strikes, Betances’ fastball topped out at 95 mph; however, according to Erik Boland, his velocity mostly sat between 92-94 mph.
Having pitched just three innings in total during his rehab, Betances struck out four and walked two — so hopefully, no one is going too crazy about Betances’ fastball being below 97 mph — his average over the past four seasons.
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Naturally, it will take time for Betances to round into form following his extended absence due to a severe lat strain. Therefore it will be interesting to see how and when manager Aaron Boone uses his traditional setup man to closer Aroldis Chapman.
Should Betances’ hard-thrown, ground ball inducing curveball continue to benefit his swing and miss four-seamer, then Boone will have the benefit of working in the New York native in any situation — especially the high-leverage kind.
With 13 games remaining in the regular season and a one-game lead over the Astros for home-field advantage throughout the playoffs, I’d be surprised to see Betances resume his traditional eighth-inning role (at least immediately).
Instead, I expect matchups to be exploited depending on the specific batter. And why not, with Tommy Kahnle, Adam Ottavino and Zack Britton all offering something a little different in terms of their repertoire.