The Yankees announced Thursday that they’ve selected the contract of right-hander Nick Tropeano from their alternate training site. He’ll go onto the 40-man roster and into the big league bullpen. Right-hander Tommy Kahnle, who had Tommy John surgery earlier this week, was moved to the 45-day IL to clear a 40-man spot for Tropeano.
It’s a homecoming of sorts for Tropeano, a Long Island native who grew up a Yankee fan. The 29-year-old (30 later this month) has pitched in parts of five big league seasons, working to a combined 4.51 ERA with 8.0 K/9, 3.6 BB/9 and 1.57 HR/9. Tropeano was at one point a fairly well-regarded prospect in the Astros and Angels organizations, but his career has been derailed by persistent arm injuries. The righty had Tommy John surgery with the Angels back in 2016 and has since battled shoulder and elbow troubles that have limited him to a combined 182 innings (between the minors and big leagues) across the 2017-19 seasons.
Tropeano was hit hard in the Triple-A Pacific Coast League least year, posting a 5.87 ERA in 79 2/3 frames. That’s a notoriously hitter-friendly setting in the first place, though, and the same changes to the ball composition that led to a record level of home runs hit in the Majors also impacted Triple-A. Prior to the 2019 season, Tropeano carried a career 3.67 ERA in 223 Triple-A frames.