Yankees notebook: Deivi Garcia could impact the team as a multi-inning reliever



BALTIMORE — With the Yankees’ bullpen suffering from some injuries, the team could eventually turn to a former starter for help.

Deivi Garcia, once a consensus top 100 starting pitching prospect, has been pitching out of the bullpen at Triple-A. The 23-year-old has made three multi-inning appearances this season, all in two or three innings, as he allowed two earned runs with six strikeouts and three walks in 7.2 innings.

The Yankees’ hope is that the right-hander can find more consistency in relief. If Garcia were to return to the majors, he’d probably do it via the pen.

“He’s a young man, so he’s still developing. What we’ve seen from Deivi a little bit in the last few years is that influx of things,” Aaron Boone said Sunday. “What we saw in spring training is really good. Maybe that’s something we can get in smaller bursts.”

Garcia pitched well in relief throughout the spring, posting a 1.93 ERA and 10 strikeouts in 9.1 innings. While he walked five (management has always been a problem for the youngster), the performance was encouraging for Garcia after a difficult two years in the minors.

Garcia made his major league debut with the Yankees as a 21-year-old during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season. He posted a 4.98 ERA in six starts, also made one postseason appearance, but hasn’t had much success since.

Garcia pitched primarily at Triple-A in 2021, where he posted a 6.85 ERA in 90.2 innings. He rejoined the Yankees for two games that year, but gave up six earned runs in 8.1 innings. Last season was even more difficult for the pitcher, as the Yankees shut him down for two months with a finger injury and a much-needed restart. Garcia pitched six games at Double-A and 14 at Triple-A and finished the year with a 6.89 ERA and zero major league appearances.

Only 13 of his 20 starts were starts in 2022.

Boone added that Matt Krook is also being groomed for a multi-inning relief role at Triple-A. Mostly a starter throughout his minor league career, the lefty has made three appearances for the RailRiders. Krook has given up one earned run in six innings, striking out eight and walking three.

With Jonathan Loaisiga, Tommy Kahnle and Lou Trivino all on disabled list, Garcia and Krook are among the Yankees’ bullpen depth options. So is Greg Weissert, who Boone said will “be a big factor” this year.

THE PEN OF SEVERINO PUSHED BACK

Boone said Luis Severino’s bullpen, initially planned for Sunday in Baltimore, has been moved to Monday in Cleveland. Boone attributed that to Severino having a “heavy” workload on Saturday and Sunday and escape game day/getaway schedules.

Severino, who is recovering from a dorsal injury, had a catch before Sunday’s game.

MOVE THE MARTIAN AROUND

Jasson Dominguez, the Yankees’ top-ranked prospect still in the minor leagues, made his first professional start in left field Saturday at Double-A. There he dropped his first opportunity, according to Mike Ashmore of My Central Jersey.

Dominguez had exclusively played center field up to that point.

On Sunday, Boone said Dominguez will continue to move around the outfield this year.

“I don’t know what the exact plan is,” the skipper said. “I just know that it’s in the mix to have him play and introduce him to corners. So that’s at stake.”

YANKEES IN THE YARD

Yankees fans have a history of traveling well to Camden Yards, but it’s easy to find other striped connections in the Orioles’ beautiful ballpark.

As a first-time reporter, this writer found a few while scouting the stadium on Sunday. The team’s Hall of Fame wall includes some former Yankees, including Paul Blair, Hank Bauer and Mike Mussina, as well as retired YES Network host Ken Singleton. And Paul O’Neill, Jason Giambi, Robinson Cano and Nick Swisher are among those with home run markers that hit Eutaw Street.

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