New York Yankees pitcher Sonny Gray has left the team for the birth of his second child, but he’ll be back for the upcoming Seattle series.
San Francisco Chronicle Athletics’ beat writer Susan Slusser broke the news with a Tweet stating that Sonny Gray will not be with the New York Yankees to face his previous team.
Sonny Gray is not here for the Yankees-A’s series. He’s on paternity leave.
— Susan Slusser (@susanslusser) September 3, 2018
The Yankees’ right-hander has had a difficult time in 2018, facing issues ranging from a bullpen demotion to fending off a Twitter controversy. But for the next few days, he can forget about his troubles and focus on his growing family.
Gray and his wife Jessica already have a three-year-old son named Gunnar Gray.
After he welcomes the newest member of his family, Gray will head back to the Yankees to try and prove his value down the stretch. There could even be an opportunity for him to regain his spot in the rotation.
Since he lost his starting job to Lance Lynn, Gray has pitched fairly well in five appearances out the of the pen and one spot start. He’s lowered his ERA from 5.40 to an almost respectable 4.96 over that stretch.
Meanwhile, Lynn has been awful in his past several starts. The Yankees’ mid-season acquisition from the Minnesota Twins has given up 19 runs in his last 18.2 innings of work.
Another bad outing from Lynn could send Aaron Boone back to the drawing board, and he would have to at least consider reinstating Gray.
Gray can also make his case for a potential postseason roster spot. The Yankees starting rotation has been inconsistent lately, which makes the playoff long reliever job one of the most important roles on the team.
With a new mouth to feed and arbitration coming up in the offseason, Sonny Gray should have plenty of motivation to finish strong in September.