Yankees’ Luis Severino could start rehab assignment Sunday

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A timeline for Luis Severino’s return to the Yankees is beginning to come into focus.

The right-hander, 15 months removed from Tommy John surgery, was scheduled to throw another simulated game Monday. If everything went well, he will start a rehab assignment on Sunday, likely with Low-A Tampa.

Rehab assignments have a maximum 30-day clock for pitchers, meaning Severino could be back with the Yankees by July 6, barring any setbacks.

“I don’t want to get too far ahead of ourselves. I want today to go well,” manager Aaron Boone said Monday before the Yankees lost to the Rays, 3-1. “Obviously that next step is another big one, into a game and with a team. Let’s get past today and hope everything goes well. It’s been a really good few weeks for Sevy, I know he’s throwing the ball well and feels really good. But yeah, I think you can kind of imagine the timeline a little bit, if things continue to progress.”

Yankees Luis Severino rehab
Yankees pitcher Luis Severino could begin a rehab assignment on Sunday.
Anthony J. Causi

Severino was scheduled to throw three innings in Monday’s simulated game. He has been pitching every sixth day during his comeback — which would give him time for five rehab starts — and could continue on that schedule even when he is back in the big leagues.

There was no immediate word on how Severino did, but if there were a setback, it likely would have been announced. The real key is how he feels Tuesday.

The Yankees rotation has mostly been a strength to start the season, with a top-10 ERA in MLB (3.48), but recently lost a big piece in Corey Kluber. The veteran’s right shoulder strain could sideline him for two months, making Severino’s eventual return loom even larger

Boone has said that the plan has Severino continuing to build up his pitch count with the Yankees, meaning he won’t need to be fully stretched out to be activated.

“We’ve taken a pretty conservative approach with Sevy,” Boone said. “So there’s going to be a lot of time that’s gone off the clock since he had the surgery. We feel like he’s in a really good spot right now. The stuff has been very good in his last couple outings and we’re very encouraged by what we’re seeing.

“So I don’t want to put a ceiling on what Luis Severino can do for us. We’ll just have to see as he comes back and then make our evaluations and everyone will make their evaluations as he starts to accrue some outings once he gets back to the big leagues.”

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