All the Yankees were trying to do was give left-hander Matt Krook a soft place to land at the end of another close game with Milwaukee that had gone awry quickly.
Unfortunately, Krook -- and, eventually, Ron Marinaccio -- poured gasoline on a puddle of Miller Lite, resulting in another lopsided score and an awful pit in the Yankees' gut reminiscent of earlier in the season when the young left-hander was fed to the Red Sox.
Krook, at Triple-A, has allowed just eight hits this season, though he's struggled to keep his walks low. In the bigs? Krook's trademark ability to miss bats has disappeared, while his command has remained an issue.
The lefty entered a 5-2 game on Saturday that quickly unraveled further when he walked Brice Turang, allowed a single to Tyrone Taylor, watched both batters steal second and third, walked rookie Sal Frelick, and allowed a two-run single to William Contreras. Marinaccio then entered to try to wriggle his way out of the jam, but instead drilled Mark Canha, then walked two consecutive men with the bases loaded and two out. What was once a hard-fought 2-2 game became a Brewers laugher for the second consecutive evening.
And, on Sunday, the Yankees promoted the two least inspiring members of their 40-man roster, Matt Bowman and Anthony Misiewicz, to replace Marinaccio and Krook.
Yankees promote Matt Bowman, Anthony Misiewicz to MLB roster
Welcome to the big leagues! You're joining at an interesting time.
Bowman, perhaps most famous in pinstripes for being mocked by Vlad Guerrero Jr. for a spring training home run, hasn't pitched in the bigs since 2019 in Cincinnati, when he posted a 3.66 ERA in 32 innings. This season, he's posted a 3.86 ERA (with a 1.38 WHIP) in Scranton. His promotion comes a few months after he opted out of his minor-league deal, and the Yankees scrambled to keep him. The move makes sense. It won't rock the boat. It might just help the Yankees' beleaguered bullpen get to the finish line. But it's certainly not as exciting as a Krook breakout would've been.
Blink and you'll miss Misiewicz joining the organization; he came over in early July after big-league stints with the Diamondbacks and Tigers. The lefty has a 4.10 ERA in the minors between multiple organizations (with 49 Ks in 41.2 innings, and that's the last time you'll read me saying something nice about Anthony Misiewicz). He's also got an 8.64 ERA in eight big-league games this season.
The Yankees had high hopes for Krook and Marinaccio, but both have allowed the wheels to fall off this season far more often than they've glued them back on. In what seems to be shaping up as a dull thud of a September after so much promise in Week 1, their demises could define the stretch run, as the Yankees' bullpen depth has been stretched to its thinnest point.