Called on to pitch the eighth inning, Yankees reliever Dellin Betances walked four Blue Jays and recorded only one out before departing. He’s now up to 26 walks on the season in 27 1/3 innings and 123 batters faced. That’s an 8.56 BB/9 and a 21.1 percent walk rate.
Since 2000, there has been only one qualified reliever to post a walk rate of 20 percent or higher: Stephen Randolph had a 21.4 percent walk rate for the Diamondbacks in 2004. Aroldis Chapman came close with a 19.8 percent rate in 2011 with the Reds.
While Betances has never been a maven of control, he had a respectable 32/9 K/BB ratio in 17 1/3 innings and 68 batters faced through the end of May. That’s a 4.67 BB/9 and 13.2 percent walk rate. Since the start of June, his K/BB ratio is 18/17 in 10 innings and 55 batters faced; 15.3 BB/9 and 30.9%.
It’s not clear if Betances’ control issue is physical or mental. Either way, one wonders if a stint on the disabled list might be in his future. Betances was recently named to the American League All-Star roster.