Cashman also added that relievers Tommy Kahnle and Lou Trivino would also start the season on the IL. Kahnle is battling biceps tendinitis that he expects will keep him out for a month. Trivino has a strained right elbow ligament and no timetable.
This isn’t a great look for the Yankees at first blush, especially with what we know now about the Frankie Montas trade last year. He’s now recovering from shoulder surgery and won’t return until much later in the season.
Rodon, on the other hand, just signed a six-year, $162 million deal with the Yankees after turning in a career season with the Giants. This despite the fact that injuries defined all but one of his seven years with the White Sox. Rodon even had Tommy John surgery in 2019 before changing his mechanics and finding new success.
But looking at his first spring training outing with the Yankees, it’s clear Rodon wasn’t fully himself. He surrendered five runs on six hit in two innings, though he claimed he felt healthy. Regardless, the size of his contract alone means the Yankees hope his absence is a short one.
It’s also worth noting that Nestor Cortes is still recovering from a hamstring strain, though his recovery seems to be on track. Clarke Schmidt and Domingo German will now almost certainly both be in the rotation to start the season. Maybe a youngster like Jhony Brito will also get a chance.
Unfortunately, Rodon is still an elite strikeout pitcher who has good numbers not only against the AL East and in Yankee Stadium, but against the rival Astros. Here’s hoping his recovery is swift.