Ivan Nova was diagnosed Sunday with a partially-torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow and is expected to undergo season-ending Tommy John reconstructive elbow surgery. That leaves a big gap in the Yankees’ starting rotation — one that will be filled, at least initially, by left-hander Vidal Nuno.
Yankees manager Joe Girardi officially named Nuno the club’s new fifth starter on Tuesday evening, according to WFAN’s Sweeny Murti. The 26-year-old southpaw tossed five scoreless innings and struck out six batters in what was thought to be a spot start Sunday versus the Rays.
His next start will be this Saturday at Yankee Stadium against the visiting Angels.
Nuno owns a 3.68 ERA, 1.33 WHIP, and 20/11 K/BB ratio in 29 1/3 career major league innings. He had a 1.14 ERA, 0.64 WHIP, and 30/2 K/BB ratio in 25 frames last season at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
The Astros rallied late to keep their winning streak alive, extending it to 11 games with a 7-4 victory over the Royals on Sunday afternoon. The club is now 48-25, leading the Mariners by a full game in the AL West.
The Royals took a 4-2 lead after three innings, but Brian McCann knocked in a run with a single in the top of the fourth to cut the deficit to one run. Carlos Correa hit a game-tying solo home run in the eighth. The Astros kept their foot on the gas, scoring two more runs on RBI singles from Evan Gattis and Marwin Gonzalez in the top of the eighth and another in the top of the ninth on Correa’s sacrifice fly.
Starter Lance McCullers allowed four runs (two earned) on six hits and two walks with nine strikeouts over six innings. Tony Sipp worked a scoreless seventh. Ken Giles did the same in the eighth. Hector Rondon finished off the win in the ninth, working around a one-out walk with a game-ending double play.
After winning all 10 games on their road trip against the Rangers, Athletics, and Royals, the Astros will head home for a nine-game homestand against the Rays, Royals, and Blue Jays. Each club is below .500.