Is Yankees' Luis Severino playing in the World Baseball Classic?

Championship Series - New York Yankees v Houston Astros - Game Two
Championship Series - New York Yankees v Houston Astros - Game Two / Tom Pennington/GettyImages

The New York Yankees will enter spring training with a healthy and powerful front four, featuring Gerrit Cole, Carlos Rodón, Nestor Cortes and Luis Severino. A healthy five? Don't count on it (thanks, Frankie), but the foursome is still currently stabilized, and the Yanks will do their absolute best to make sure that remains the case as Opening Day approaches.

That means that some pitchers might enter camp with different restrictions -- specifically Luis Severino, who spent time on the 60-Day IL last summer (not by choice!) in the wake of Tommy John surgery that wiped out most of his 2021 season.

Cortes has been given a different set of rules, and is available for Team USA's battles at the World Baseball Classic (and will be returning to camp in Tampa, FL a few days early).

Sevy, though?

Will New York Yankees P Luis Severino suit up for Team Dominican Republic in World Baseball Classic?

Big-time no, but not for lack of effort.

Severino was in the initial roster pool, but the Yankees forbade him from participating last week, a decision we can't imagine will make the right-hander particularly thrilled in the wake of the way his 2022 season was handled.

The Yankees were a step or two more cautious than Severino wanted them to be last year, and in the interest of "measure twice, cut once," they plopped him on the 60-Day IL for a mild lat strain midway through the summer. Severino disagreed with the team's assessment, and came off the injured list roaring, taking a no-hitter through seven innings against Texas ... before being removed. He wasn't thrilled by the call, either.

Severino's final season under contract with the Yankees is 2023, and for his own interest and the team's, his best move would be to come out rocking and firing. Unfortunately, based on recent data, keeping his arm fresh and out of the WBC is the prudent move.

So why is Cortes allowed to compete, especially after the team sliced his innings with a "phantom" IL stint last year, too? That's a question for another day.