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.
For a few days, it looked like Aaron Judge was finally hitting his stride in the postseason. He was still striking out at a regular clip, piling more and more strikeouts atop the 16 he racked up in the Division Series, but he was mashing, too. He engineered a three-run homer during Game 3 of the Championship Series, followed by another blast and game-tying double in Game 4. His one-out double helped pad a five-run lead in Game 5, while his 425-footer off of Brad Peacock barely made a dent during a 7-1 loss in Game 6. And then Lance McCullers‘ curveball found and fooled him, as it did five of the 14 batters it met in Game 7:
The strikeout was Judge’s first of the evening and 27th since the start of the playoffs. No other major league batter has racked up that many strikeouts in a single postseason, though Alfonso Soriano’s 26-strikeout record in 2003 comes the closest. Within that record, Judge also collected three golden sombreros (four strikeouts in a single game), narrowly avoiding the dreaded platinum sombrero (five strikeouts in a single game).
It’s an unfortunate footnote to a spectacular year for the rookie outfielder, who decimated the competition with 52 home runs and 8.2 fWAR during the regular season and was a pivotal part of the Yankees’ playoff run. Thankfully, the image of McCullers’ curveball darting just under Judge’s bat won’t be the image that sticks with us for years to come. Instead, it’ll look something like this: