Aaron Judge wasn’t in the lineup for the Yankees Sunday, but that wasn’t a problem in a 4-1 win over the Reds. Luis Severino’s return to the rotation made for a strong day of ball, while long balls from Harrison Bader and Gleyber Torres keyed the offense. The win completed the Reds’ streak and improved the Yankees to 11-3 in their last 14 games.
The big news was Severino’s 2023 debut. The right-hander suffered a lat strain late in fall training and has been working his way back ever since. A two-time All-Star, Severino finished third in Cy Young voting (2018), but has been plagued by injuries over the past several seasons. Due to Tommy John surgery and various ailments, he appeared in just three games in 2019, four in 2021 and 19 last season.
In a limited pitch count against the Reds (he finished with 75) on Sunday, Severino went 4 2/3 innings, allowing just one run on four hits, one walk and five strikeouts. His fastball sits in the 96-97 mph range, and he’s ranked 68th in the game at 98.6 mph.
There was also some controversy surrounding the one run he allowed. On Spencer Steer’s looping liner in the first inning, Yankees right fielder Jake Bauer failed to catch a slider down the foul line. It was initially ruled a foul ball, but a replay review ruled it fair. The umpires awarded Jonathan India (who was on first base) home plate. Yankees manager Aaron Boone argued against the bullpen’s reasonable move to count the runs.
Bowers was on the ground with a baseball behind him as the Indians approached third base, the call was a perfect defense — and since this was not a ground rule double or an automatic double, the umpires were allowed to use judgment. Where to put the runners — but of little consequence.
The Yankees took a 2-1 lead in the fifth on Bader’s two-run shot.
They would go on two more on Torres’ homer and Anthony Volpe’s RBI double.
The Yankees have now won 11 of their last 14 games and are at 29-20 to go nine games over .500. Severino’s return is also important in the macros, as Carlos Rodon and Frankie Montas remain on the injured list.