Severino Dazzles In Debut As Bombers Fall to Sox
Luis Severino was everything the Yankees expected in his debut against the Boston Red Sox. The #1 prospect in the Yankees farm system, Severino proved general manager Brian Cashman right in keeping the young stud instead of trading him for a veteran pitcher.
Severino displayed all of his pitches over his five innings where he gave up only 2 hits, 1 earned run, struck out seven, and walked none, becoming the only pitcher in American League history with that line in his debut. Even though he took the loss, Severino looked fantastic. His fastball maxed out at 97mph, change-up around 90mph, and slider around 89mph, each with movement.
The fast-paced hard throwing righty had great control of his fastball for the majority of the night as he was able to blow it by Red Sox hitters at will. Perhaps the best part of his performance was his consistent velocity throughout the game, while maintaining a veteran-like poise on the mound.
When he did struggle, which every rookie will, he was able to bounce back. After giving up a monster homerun to Red Sox DH David Ortiz on a 2-0 fastball, Severino came back to strike out the next hitter, Hanley Ramirez. The only obstacle that held Severino back was his pitch count, which manager Joe Girardi maxed out at 100; he threw 94 pitches. The Yankees would eventually fall to the Red Sox 2-1 as their bats refused to support the young rookie.
He was nearly out shined by Red Sox starter, and knuckleball pitcher Steven Wright who had a no-hitter until Didi Gregorius singled with 1 out in the fifth.
At 21 years, 166 days old, Severino is the youngest starting pitcher to debut with the Yankees since Phil Hughes in 2007 (20 years, 304 days). In Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, Severino went 7-0 in 11 starts with a spectacular 1.91 ERA.
The highly touted rookie will most likely be back on the mound in five days. If you consider his performance and compare it to the rest of the Yankees rotation, there's a case for Severino being the best pitcher on the roster and there is no doubt that all the excitement was worth the wait.