Yankees’ Chase Whitley to make MLB debut Thursday

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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.

Cardinals tab Miles Mikolas for Opening Day start

Miles Mikolas
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The Cardinals have selected right-hander Miles Mikolas as their Opening Day starter, the club revealed Saturday. It’ll mark the first career Opening Day start for Mikolas, who is scheduled to go up against the Brewers when the team hits the road on March 28.

The 29-year-old righty was a strong contender for the 2018 NL Cy Young Award, earning All-Star distinctions and pitching to a career-best 18-4 record with a 2.83 ERA, 1.3 BB/9, 6.5 SO/9, and 4.3 fWAR over 200 2/3 innings. He’s positioned to lead the Cardinals rotation in 2019 as well, with former Opening Day starters Carlos Martínez and Adam Wainwright and some combination of right-handers Jack Flaherty, Michael Wacha, Alex Reyes, and John Gant behind him.

Manager Mike Shildt told reporters that Flaherty, Wacha, Wainwright, and Martínez had all been considered for the honor, but admitted that Opening Day honors were ultimately handed to Mikolas “in recognition of [his performance] last year.” The Cardinals are scheduled to play a four-game set against the Brewers to start the season and will stop over in Pittsburgh for another two games before returning to St. Louis for their opening homestand against the Padres on April 4. Additional pitching assignments have yet to be announced.