CLEVELAND -- Domingo Germán tried to push through a hip issue that he says affected him his past three starts, but the ailment has made him the latest Yankee to land on the injured list.
German has a left hip flexor strain, and he will receive an MRI in New York on Monday. The Yankees placed him on the 10-day IL on Sunday and called up left-hander Stephen Tarpley from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre to replace him on the active roster and provide depth in the bullpen.
Manager Aaron Boone said the Yankees, who had a bullpen day Sunday with Masahiro Tanaka on paternity leave, are likely to have another 'pen day in the next turn through the rotation.
“We’ve got an off-day [Wednesday] to play with here, so it’ll kind of depend on how we line up our guys and what day we decide we’d like to do another opener-like situation,” Boone said. “And it depends on our usage as the week unfolds. But the off-day gives us a little wiggle room.”
Though German said he first felt discomfort in his hip during his May 26 start in Kansas City, the Yankees were not aware of the injury until he spoke up about it after a game of catch at Progressive Field on Saturday.
“I didn’t tell the team [after the Kansas City start], because I felt that it’s the kind of injury that I was going to get through. In-between starts, it would kind of go away. So I didn’t think it was something that was going to be putting me out of the rotation.”
Beginning with the start in Kansas City, German had an 8.59 ERA over 14 2/3 innings in three starts. Prior to that point, he had a 2.60 ERA in his first 55 1/3 innings and 10 appearances, with an MLB-best nine wins.
German said the injury would get progressively worse the deeper he pitched into games, robbing him of some strength. But he said the pain was most profound during Friday’s outing, in which he took the loss by giving up four runs in six innings against the Indians, and on Saturday.
“It’s a little frustrating,” German said of going on the IL. “This is exactly what I was trying to prevent.”
Boone was asked if he was upset that German hid his injury as long as he did.
“We always want our players to treat whatever is going on with them, if there’s any kind of issues,” Boone said. “But you also understand that in Major League sports, there’s little things you deal with that as a player you don’t view as a big deal. It’s hard to get inside him and know what level of discomfort he was in, if it was very minor or maybe [Saturday] was the first day he felt it was something that limited him.”
Tarpley was 4-0 with a 1.50 ERA in 11 relief appearances with Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, though he had a 10.38 ERA over 4 1/3 innings in six appearances with the Yankees earlier this season. The Yanks called him up because of the left-handed-heavy Indians lineup they were facing on Sunday, and sure enough, they wound up needing Tarpley to close out a wild 10-inning, 7-6 win. Boone said that the Yankees wanted to keep Triple-A right-hander Chance Adams on his normal rest routine.
Kratz is back
The Yankees signed veteran catcher Erik Kratz to a Minor League deal over the weekend, and he has reported to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
Kratz was a great story of the 2018 season because of the impact he made on the NL Central-winning Brewers after Milwaukee acquired him from the Yankees in a minor trade. Kratz, who turns 39 this week, has been with the Brewers, Giants, Rays and now Yanks organizations in a vagabond '19.