Jameson Taillon, despite his ups and downs with the New York Yankees, has earned himself a spot in the postseason rotation, which was previously in doubt just as early as two months ago. But he’s now 13-5 with a 3.90 ERA, 3.94 FIP, 1.12 WHIP and 140 strikeouts in 30 starts. That’ll do it.
More importantly, however, is Taillon’s consistency saving general manager Brian Cashman’s terrible trade deadline, where he brought in Frankie Montas, kicked Jordan Montgomery out to St. Louis, and provided no other rotation reinforcements.
Montas has been just about as bad of a trade deadline acquisition as anybody could’ve asked for. Not only was he awful, but now he’s on the injured list with the same shoulder issue that plagued him earlier in the year. His 6.35 ERA, 4.93 FIP, 1.54 WHIP, 15 walks and 6 HRs allowed in eight starts (39.2 innings) is as indefensible as it gets.
What if Taillon had continued his lackluster pitching that plagued him for a few months? Where would the Yankees be? That’s exactly why he should have his spot solidified for October.
Montas flaming out has been incredibly disheartening (and we’ve still got another year of him!) but guys like Taillon, Nestor Cortes Jr., Luis Severino and Domingo German have stepped up to luckily make the horrible trade an afterthought.
Jameson Taillon has earned a spot in the Yankees’ postseason rotation
And make that 25! He was in line for the win on Thursday with another quality before the bullpen blew his nice outing against the Boston Red Sox and he also handled the Blue Jays on Tuesday night with 7.1 innings of two-run ball.
You might say, “How is Taillon saving Cashman when Cashman acquired Taillon? How is Taillon saving Cashman when Cashman has been responsible for acquiring all those other pitchers?” Because it’s not that simple!
Time and time again, in modern Yankees history, Cashman’s biggest flaw is bolstering this roster in the middle of a big year or making the necessary additions in free agency. He can find diamonds in the rough. He can make trades that minimize unnecessary risk. Hey, he can apparently even build a reputable farm system! Nice! But the Yankees have had special rosters for a long time now, and they’ve all been wasted due to a lack of resources or the wrong additions when the right ones were there for the taking.
Gerrit Cole, Cortes, Severino and Taillon, without a doubt, should make up the playoff rotation, and the big wins here are Sevy getting back to full strength and Taillon finding a way to maintain consistency. In the end, fans knew Jordan Montgomery wouldn’t have been a viable rotation arm come October, even if he was the fourth guy. The hope was Montas would be the No. 3, but that’s now off the table. He can’t even be the No. 4!
That makes what Taillon’s been doing that important to the Yankees’ postseason foundation. The fact that it was in spite of Cashman’s attempt to improve the roster makes it that much better.
And how much can we even credit Cashman here for the other guys in the rotation? Severino’s injury situations have been mishandled for years. There was no risk with importing Cortes, who was mostly bad throughout his career before last season. Cole’s been a disaster when his contract comes into context. Even Taillon was acquired to deliver more than he has in two years (4.09 ERA, 4.17 FIP in 59 starts).
As the parts slowly come together, though, the smaller details won’t matter if the October results are there, and that’ll save Cashman in ways Yankees fans could’ve never even imagined.