The Yankees were swept by the Rays over this past weekend -- and it got worse.
C Gary Sanchez landed on the 10-day DL after sustaining a right groin injury in Sunday’s loss to Tampa Bay. The injury was classified as a Grade 1 sprain, according to Yankees manager Aaron Boone.
Sanchez is expected to miss three to four weeks, Boone said. He was hitting just .190 but had accrued 14 home runs, tied for third-best on the team and tied for No. 21 in the American League.
Until his return, Sanchez will be replaced by back-up Austin Romine. The 29-year-old is hitting .305 with four homers in 28 games.
Higashioka promoted, Frazier optioned
In the corresponding move to sending Sanchez to the DL, the Yankees optioned OF Clint Frazier back to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and recalled C Kyle Higashioka and P Giovanny Gallegos.
Higashioka, already on the Yankees’ 40-man roster, was hitting .191 with five home runs in 51 games with the RailRiders.
The decision to once again option Frazier is likely frustrating for the 23-year-old, who has demonstrated he has what it takes to play in the majors. He would have likely given the Yankees a series-saving home run Sunday had it not hit a speaker hanging from Tropicana Field’s dome.
In a move of what can only be described as pure savagery, the Rays later poked fun at the incident, “billing” the Yankees for the replacement of the speaker.
Shreve, somehow, still with Yankees
After the Rays got out to a 2-0 lead after the first inning and a 6-3 lead after the third, the Yankees bullpen pitched a shutout from the fourth through the 11th innings. New York relievers delivered a stellar 117 pitches and allowed no hits over the stretch.
And then Chasen Shreve took the mound for the 12th inning.
He threw one pitch, off of which rookie Jake Bauers went yard to right-center.
(There’s something to be said for Boone bringing in Shreve and his 4.85 ERA into the game before Aroldis Chapman, but that’s for another post.)
Many fans called for Shreve to be designated for the assignment following his latest outing, which wasn’t just a one-off. Over his last nine games, Shreve has pitched eight innings, allowing 13 hits, nine runs and four home runs.