The New York Yankees will pick up Luis Severino’s $15 million option for 2023, according to general manager Brian Cashman.
Cashman announced the team’s intentions at his otherwise uneventful end-of-year press conference.
Brian Cashman said that the #Yankees will pick up Luis Severino’s option for 2023.
— Bryan Hoch (@BryanHoch) November 4, 2022
This was an absolute no-brainer of a decision for the Yankees. Luis Severino dazzled in his first full season back from having Tommy John surgery in 2020. Count out some midseason shoulder trouble, and he looked like his old self.
In 19 starts, Severino, 28, went 7-3 with a 3.18 ERA, plus a respectable 9.9 strikeouts per nine innings (K/9). Severino posted a 4.90 ERA in the postseason, but that was more from having one bad inning in each of his two starts than it was his actual pitching. His expected batting average (xBA), slugging (xSLG), and ERA (xERA) ranged from the 83rd to the 86th percentiles.
Severino also did a good job mixing up his pitch selection. Rather than relying mostly on his fastball and slider, he incorporated more of the changeup that led to career years in 2017 and ’18. Severino also mixed in a cutter he learned while rehabbing from his surgery and subsequent injuries.
Thus, the Yankees can expect to have a competitive pitching rotation next year regardless of Aaron Judge’s free agency. Luis Severino will slot in perfectly as either the No. 2 starter behind ace Gerrit Cole or the No. 3 behind crafty Nestor Cortes.
What’s more, Severino will have a full offseason to get himself even more healthy without having to worry about a lockout. Remember, next season is officially a contract year and he’ll be extra motivated to play well. That means this offseason will be about putting in the work to make it happen.
As for the Yankees, they too should be watching Severino. Maybe if Brian Cashman can take a break from studying the three true outcomes, he’ll lock up one of his better arms.