The New York Yankees got some tough news as pitchers and catchers report to spring training. Manager Aaron Boone announced on Wednesday that starter Frankie Montas will be sidelined for several months following upcoming shoulder surgery. The injury may cause Montas to miss the whole 2023 season, although Boone said a late-season return is possible.
Aaron Boone says that the best-case scenario for Frankie Montas is a late-season return: pic.twitter.com/qpd6EGpEP5
— Yankees Videos (@snyyankees) February 15, 2023
The news is a big blow to the back end of New York’s rotation. Montas struggled following his acquisition at last year’s trade deadline, but this was likely due to his shoulder issues. The Yankees hoped he could pitch closer to his potential while at full strength. Instead, last year’s deadline deal in which New York gave up several prospects continues to yield disappointing results.
Frankie Montas to be Sidelined for Months
Montas was the Yankees’ biggest pitching acquisition at last year’s trade deadline. The Oakland Athletics shipped him and Lou Trivino to the Bombers in exchange for four prospects: infielder Cooper Bowman and pitchers JP Sears, Ken Waldichuk, and Luis Medina. While Trivino served as a key bullpen contributor down the stretch, Montas had a rough time once he donned the pinstripes. In eight starts, he pitched to a 1-3 record with a 6.35 ERA and a 1.528 WHIP. He also served up six home runs in those starts. Inflammation in his right shoulder shut Montas down in mid-September. He briefly returned in a bullpen role during the postseason.
The same shoulder issue has apparently persisted for Montas. After an announcement last month that inflammation would cause him to miss about a month of the regular season, today’s update reflected a much bigger setback. With Nestor Cortes’ status for Opening Day in question, the Yankees rotation is now in a precarious spot heading into the season.
If all goes well in spring training, the starting five will be led by Gerrit Cole, Carlos Rodon, and Luis Severino to kick things off. After that, Domingo German will likely slot in to start the season. If Cortes misses any regular season time, the Yankees will have to reach further down in the depth chart. Clarke Schmidt, Jonathan Loaisiga, and Luis Gil have minimal starting experience. Any of them could be good for a spot start or kicking off a bullpen game. Still, with all the initial optimism surrounding the Yankees’ rotation, things now feel touch-and-go.