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Boone: Chapman at full strength, ready for 9th

Skipper talks closer's health, process for deciding on WC Game starter
October 3, 2018

NEW YORK -- Should the Yankees have a lead in the ninth inning for Wednesday's American League Wild Card Game against the Athletics, manager Aaron Boone said that he expects to place the ball in Albertin Chapman's left hand."You never know how the game unfolds, but hopefully he'd be that

NEW YORK -- Should the Yankees have a lead in the ninth inning for Wednesday's American League Wild Card Game against the Athletics, manager Aaron Boone said that he expects to place the ball in Albertin Chapman's left hand.
"You never know how the game unfolds, but hopefully he'd be that guy," Boone said.
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Boone has said that he could use the bullpen aggressively in relief of starter Luis Severino, with Chapman joined in the late innings by the likes of Dellin Betances, Zach Britton, Chad Green and Player Page for David Robertson.
Chapman has worked the ninth inning just once since being activated from the disabled list in late September, logging the final two outs of the club's 100th victory, an 8-5 win at Fenway Park on Saturday.
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Prior to that, Chapman had been used in lower-leverage situations, working the eighth inning once and the seventh inning three times. He had nine strikeouts in 4 1/3 innings over those five appearances, permitting two hits -- including a Mookie Betts homer -- against three walks.
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"I think he is [back to 100 percent], or at least very close," Boone said. "I've been really pleased with his last few outings, and I feel physically he's in a good place."

Sevy season
Boone said that starting Severino on Wednesday came down to his final call following a lengthy meeting with general manager Brian Cashman, front-office members, coaches and support staff that took place after Saturday's win over the Red Sox in Boston.
"Everyone kind of stakes their claim and gives their thoughts, and it's conversational," Boone said. "Everyone has opinions, and sometimes differing [ones], which is good. But ultimately it comes down to my decision on it, and after sleeping on it and taking everyone's input, Sevy was the guy that I wanted to give the ball today."

Boone declined to outline his specific statistical reasons for starting Severino, saying only that he believed the right-hander is throwing the ball better and has "turned the corner" to approach his All-Star form. But Boone said that it was not a clear-cut decision with J.A. Happ and Masahiro Tanaka receiving heavy consideration.
"In a lot of ways, I went back and forth on this, even into the final days," Boone said. "Had we gone a different direction, it's so close to me that I felt good about a lot of different options for this game. There's a strong case to make for almost every guy to pitch in this game. But in the end, I just felt like Sevy was the right call."

This date in Yankees history
Oct. 3, 2006: Derek Jeter goes 5-for-5 with two doubles and a home run in the Yankees' 8-4 win over the Tigers in Game 1 of the AL Division Series. Jeter is one of three players to go 5-for-5 in a postseason game, along with Carl Crawford and Marquis Grissom.

Bryan Hoch has covered the Yankees for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and on Facebook.