Betances had posted a 2.56 ERA through 38 2/3 innings -- including an active scoreless streak of 17 2/3 frames -- when the All-Star rosters were announced Sunday night. Despite not getting his fifth selection to the Midsummer Classic, Betances said he feels better about his pitching than ever.
"Obviously, I feel like I've had to adapt to the hitters," Betances said. "Obviously, over the years, they kind of get to know you. I feel like I've got to emphasize more on mixing my pitches a little better. I feel like I was becoming a little predictable at times. … The first couple of years, I had better numbers going into the All-Star break, but this is the best I've felt throwing the ball."
Betances was not as worried about getting overlooked for the American League roster as he was for teammate Chad Green, who has yet to be named an All Star in his young career.
"I'm sure [Astros and AL manager] AJ Hinch or some of those guys would want to pick every guy that's deserving, but it's just a tight roster," Betances said. "Obviously, you feel for some of the guys that haven't gone, maybe they didn't get picked. Like I said, Chad Green is well-deserving. He's been unbelievable since last year, and for him not to be in, it is crazy. That's the way I see it."
Green finished the 2017 season 5-0 with a 1.83 ERA and 69 innings pitched and has started '18 in a similar way, posting a 1.91 ERA through 42 1/3 frames entering Monday.
Betances said there are plenty of deserving players who won't make the cut.
"That's every year," Betances said. "A lot of guys are left out. It just happens. Last year, I probably didn't deserve to go. It just happens at times. It's just part of it."
Instead of partaking in the festivities in Washington, Betances plans to spend his break with his wife.
"Obviously, this will be the first break [not participating]," Betances said. "It'll be weird, but at the same time, I'll enjoy those four days and spend some quality time with my wife and the new house we got."
After a Minor League rehab start with Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre last Wednesday, Masahiro Tanaka said he is ready to return to the Yankees' rotation on Tuesday in Baltimore.
Tuesday's start will be the right-hander's first Major League appearance since June 8. On Wednesday, Tanaka allowed two runs on three hits, including one home run, through five innings for Scranton. Prior to landing on the disabled list, the righty was 7-2 with a 4.58 ERA in 13 starts this season.
"I think the earlier part of the season, I felt like I was helped out a lot by the offense," Tanaka said. "Going into the later part of the season, I'd like it to be the other way around. Those close games, you want to be the one that is performing out there and helping out the team."
Tanaka threw 69 pitches in Scranton on Wednesday, and Yankees manager Aaron Boone said he's looking to continue to build that pitch count Tuesday.
"Yeah, he won't be entirely built up, but he should be 85-90 pitches, I would think, at least," Boone said. "I have to look at it exactly, but not to where he'll be hopefully a couple of starts from now, but built up enough to where we feel he can get to the later innings."
Boone said that second baseman Gleyber Torres will most likely be sent on a rehab assignment right after the All-Star break. Torres will be attending All-Star festivities in D.C. after being named an AL reserve Sunday night.
Although Boone said that getting Torres into some rehab games while the team is in Cleveland this weekend is highly unlikely, the Yankees' skipper indicated that fans won't need to wait much longer.
"I'm just saying I don't think it's a Gary Sanchez situation where he's going to be down a few weeks," Boone said. "We'll see where we're at in the next couple of days. With Gleyber, we're just making sure we have [don't] any discomfort out of there before we start ramping him up."
Boone also said that Jonathan Loaisiga received a cortisone shot on Monday for shoulder inflammation. According to Boone, the righty will be shut down for a couple of weeks.
"I think structurally we feel good about him," Boone said. "We'll just see where we're at in a couple of weeks."
This date in Yankees history
July 9, 2011: Derek Jeter became the 28th player to record 3,000 hits, accomplishing the feat with a third-inning solo home run off Tampa Bay's David Price.
Mandy Bell is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York.