Sunday, March 13, 2016

Quick Pitch: Yankees' Severino rounding into form

Spring Training Game 12: Blue Jays 1, Yankees 2 (Record: 3-7-2)

At 22 years old, no one should expect Luis Severino to be great every time he takes the mound, but was pretty darn good Saturday afternoon against the Tampa Bay Rays. Severino hurled 3 2/3 innings of four-hit ball without allowing a run. Severino struck out four batters and walked none while locating 43 of his 59 pitches for strikes.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi was pleased with the effort.

"He looked good, really good," Girardi said according to’s Michael Kolligian. "That's what you want to see out of him; he threw all his pitches, controlled innings for the most part. Velocity was great. Slider was good today, his changeup, he threw a couple good ones."

Many fans want Severino to take the leap from rookie to ace despite having just over 60 innings of major league ball under his belt. I believe it’s an unfair burden. Severino will be good, maybe even very good but we should expect there to be some blips on the radar as the season progresses. What’s more, the Yankees don’t need him to be an ace this season. The status will come, with time. #SevyWillBeAceSomeday

Speaking about the Yankees offense seems pointless since only one everyday player, Carlos Beltran, made the trip. He's doing just fine, hitting .417 this spring.

OK, maybe there is one area of concern; Gary Sanchez. The rookie, fighting for the backup catcher role, has yet to get a hit in 13 plate appearances this spring. Maybe he is pressing? Or feeling pressure? The good news is he has time to turn things around. The bad news is Austin Romine is hitting. #StayTuned

The configuration of middle relievers remains a mystery. Johnny Barbato (two earned runs on two hits) looked like a Triple-A reliever for the first time this spring, and James Pazos (allowed an inherited runner to score, facing a lefty) is not making matters easy on himself with his performance. Nick Goody struck out all three batters he faced, marking his third straight scoreless appearance. Branden Pinder should remain in good graces as he tossed a clean frame as well.

Christopher Carelli is a freelance baseball writer. Besides his work here, Christopher is a featured Yankees writer for His baseball commentary has also been published on The Cauldron via Sports Illustrated, Yahoo Sports and linked multiple times on MLB Trade Rumors’ Baseball Blogs Weigh In. He is a member of the Internet Baseball Writers Association of America, the Baseball Bloggers Alliance and the BYB Hub.