As first reported by Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish, the Yankees are planning to promote 24-year-old right-handed pitcher Chase Whitley from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Thursday afternoon to start the club’s series finale against the Mets.
Whitley was a 15th-round pick of the Yankees in 2010. He began his professional career as a closer but has since transitioned into a starter and boasts a 2.39 ERA, 1.025 WHIP, and 32/7 K/BB ratio in 26 1/3 innings this season at the Triple-A level.
Whitley is starting in place of CC Sabathia, who landed on the 15-day disabled list Sunday with inflammation and fluid buildup in his right knee.
Whitely could get a couple turns if he pitches well Thursday. It will be his major league debut.
Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith reports that the Blue Jays and third baseman Josh Donaldson are tabling extension talks as the two sides weren’t able to build any momentum towards agreement on a new contract.
Donaldson said, “We’re not quite there. That, to me, right now is not the major focus and I’m turning the page.” He added, “I want to play this season and really focus on winning games because, ultimately, our goal is to win a World Series and I don’t want to hinder that at all.” Donaldson also said he expects to hit free agency.
The 32-year-old avoided arbitration with the Blue Jays last month, agreeing on a $23 million salary for the 2018 season. He’s a free agent at season’s end. Last year, the three-time All-Star hit .270/.385/.559 with 33 home runs, 78 RBI, and 65 runs scored in 496 plate appearances. Donaldson missed six weeks in the first half with a calf injury, but was able to return and post terrific numbers, so his health — at least that aspect of it — shouldn’t be a concern going into spring training.
If Donaldson does reach free agency, he’ll join a star-studded group that will likely also include Bryce Harper, Manny Machado, Charlie Blackmon, and A.J. Pollock.