Yankees’ Rotation After Sonny Gray Moves to Bullpen

Sonny Gray

Sonny Gray

Starting pitcher Sonny Gray has been moved to the bullpen, according to New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman.

Gray will be made available in relief on Saturday, as the Yankees continue their scheduled four-game series against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park.

The 28-year old Gray, acquired from the Oakland Athletics last season, has had a rough 2018 in pinstripes.

In the Yankees’ 7-5 loss to the Baltimore Orioles on Wednesday, Gray was pulled after allowing seven earned runs in 2.2 innings. Overall, he is 8-8 with a 5.56 ERA and 99 strikeouts in 103.2 innings pitched this season.

Lance Lynn, who was acquired in a trade with the Minnesota Twins for Tyler Austin and Luis Rijo on July 30, a day before the trade deadline, will replace Gray in the rotation.

Lynn, 31, signed a one-year contract with the Twins in the offseason. He is 7-8 with a 4.89 ERA and 105 strikeouts in 106.2 innings pitched this season. 

Lynn, who has previous experience pitching out of the bullpen, came out in relief and went 4.1 innings, allowing no earned runs in the Yankees’ loss to the Orioles.

Here is how the Yankees’ starting rotation looks moving forward:

  • Luis Severino
  • J.A. Happ (when Happ is activated off the 10-day disabled list)
  • Masahiro Tanaka
  • CC Sabathia
  • Lance Lynn (replacing Sonny Gray)

On Thursday, Cashman appeared on The Michael Kay Show on 98.7 ESPN New York to discuss the move and the implications it has for the Yankees’ rotation moving forward:

“Sonny Gray is a very good major league pitcher we just haven’t had the opportunity to really see that play out over an extended period of time. I know that if he winds up somewhere else pitching, he’s going to be pitching extremely well, because the equipment is all there, the stuff is all there, (but) consistently it’s not playing out right here.”

Along with the Happ roster move (hand, foot, and mouth disease), the Yankees recalled pitcher Luis Cessa from Triple-A Scranton Walks-Barre, who may be an option to start sometime early next week if Happ isn’t activated by then.

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Lynn or Cessa will likely start Saturday against the Red Sox in Boston. The Yankees’ current scheduled starter has still yet TBA.