After a string of poor starts, Luis Severino put together a solid start against the Blue Jays. But is it safe to say the old Sevey is back?
In that time span, Severino posted a 14-2 record with a 2.31 ERA and 144 strikeouts in 20 games. This fantastic start led to Sevy being named an American League All-Star for the second straight season. It seemed as if the Yankees were almost guaranteed a win when he took the mound.
But things changed after the All-Star break. Severino seemingly lost his touch and wasn’t getting the same results.
Prior to his Aug. 18 start against the Toronto Blue Jays, Severino was 1-4 in five starts since the Mid-Summer Classic, with a bloated 7.96 ERA and only 29 strikeouts. This stretch, which could even be traced back to slightly before the All-Star break, has left many concerned.
With the Boston Red Sox going on a historic run and seemingly running away with the American League East, it is looking more and more likely the Yankees will be taking part in the A.L. Wild Card Game. A game in which teams look to their aces to step up and keep the season going.
But if Severino wasn’t shutting down the opposition like before, could he be trusted in a one game, win or go home scenario?
Since Severino’s struggles began, fans and media members alike have been trying to figure out who could start the Wild Card. However, it seems as if every prospective candidate mentioned has been themselves streaky.
Masahiro Tanaka, who was big in last year’s playoff run, has been too inconsistent, going from good to solid, to bad all season. CC Sabathia, the veteran leader of the rotation, has had nagging injuries and trouble staying in games long enough to be truly effective. The newest starting pitchers on the team, J.A. Happ, and Lance Lynn have been great since coming to the Bronx (minus Lynn’s start against the Blue Jays) but have only faced non-playoff teams.
All of these question marks lead us to Severino’s start on Saturday. This outing looked more like the Sevy Yankee fans know and love.
He went five innings, struck out eight and gave up two runs on 100 pitches. This was the type of start the Yankees and the 24-year-old desperately needed.
But after this one start, fans shouldn’t just assume that Severino has found his form and will lead them to championship 28 in 2018. While that is a possibility, it is no guarantee.
Following the loss on Saturday, Toronto dropped to 55-68. So needless to say, they aren’t a good team. There is a chance that this start for Severino looks better on the surface because of who he faced.
But there also is a chance that this was Severino finding his groove again. This was his first start since June 1 that he allowed fewer than three earned runs.
Only time will truly tell if Severino has regained his form. If he has, the Yankees will be in much better position when the postseason comes. But in the meantime, fans need to be patient, remain optimistic after this performance and not jump to conclusions.