All spring long, as Luis Severino endured myriad struggles, the right-hander continued to laugh them off.
After allowing a cavalcade of runs against the Phillies, he joked about how his slider "sucks" right now. Following his next outing, he poked fun at his 10.00+ ERA, noting how that wouldn't get it done during the regular season.
And then, just like that, he was gone, too.
On Saturday morning, NJ.com's Max Goodman ominously announced that Severino was missing his final start of the spring, and that the Yankees would address the "situation" later in the morning. Goodman reported an injury, but couldn't get confirmation. Nobody on earth expected the team's update to be positive. The only mystery left was just how disastrous this could end up being.
According to Boone a few minutes later, Severino has a "low-grade lat injury". His first start of the season is, obviously, in jeopardy. You'd have to think more starts are, as well.
So much for peaking at the right time, huh?
Yankees Luis Severino Injury: More Updates to Come
Another spring inside a Yankee fan's psyche. Watch a pitcher struggle in camp. Say to yourself, "He's hurt. Wonder how badly." Watch the team stay silent. Suddenly, yes, that pitcher is hurt. How bad is it? Probably not so bad, they say. Month, maybe two. Tops, three. And then the season is gone. Rinse and repeat. Several times each spring.
Months ago, legitimate conversations were being had about this rotation's potential to be the best in baseball. Hell, in terms of Stuff+, Eno Sarris boldly predicted they'd be top tier this past week. Were they also ... the best rotation Yankees history? It sounded hyperbolic, but great Yankee teams aren't typically built on pitching. Gerrit Cole/Carlos Rodón/Luis Severino/Nestor Cortes/Frankie Montas (in the 5 spot!) certainly rivaled Whitey Ford/Allie Reynolds/Ed Lopat ... as long as they could bring home a championship.
Now, prior to Opening Day, three of those pitchers have already disappeared. One for a month or more. One until August. And one nebulously floating around.
Happy Opening Day. If only Severino's contract year could've come last offseason instead of next winter.