Yankees left-hander Nestor Cortes has withdrawn from the World Baseball Classic due to an injured hamstring, reports Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. The injury is actually a Grade 2 hamstring strain, per Andy Martino of SNY, and Cortes will not throw off a mound for the next two weeks. Kyle Freeland of the Rockies will take the vacated spot on the Team USA roster, reports Danielle Allentuck of the Denver Gazette.
Though he will miss the WBC, Cortes still believes he will be ready for Opening Day of the regular season. That’s certainly an encouraging outlook, but the fact that it’s even now a question is a noteworthy development for the Yankees. Not too long ago, they looked like they could open the regular season with an elite rotation consisting of Gerrit Cole, Carlos Rodón, Luis Severino, Frankie Montas and Cortes. However, it was reported in January that Montas is behind in his offseason preparations due ongoing shoulder issues and will potentially miss the first month of the season. With this injury to Cortes, it now appears to be a possibility that the club starts the year without two of its projected front five.
Cortes, 28, struggled in his first few seasons in the big leagues but has had a tremendous breakout over the past two. Since the start of the 2021 campaign, he’s thrown 251 1/3 innings with a 2.61 ERA, 26.9% strikeout rate, 6.4% walk rate and 31.2% ground ball rate. He reached arbitration for the first time this offseason, with he and the club agreeing to a $3.2MM salary for this year. He’ll be eligible to go through arbitration two more times before he’s slated to reach free agency after the 2025 season.
Though it doesn’t seem like Cortes is expecting to miss any of the regular season, there’s always the possibility that his recovery doesn’t go as planned. If he has to miss any time, it’s possible that pitchers like Domingo Germán and/or Clarke Schmidt step up to make some starts as long as he and/or Montas are out. There are also still many unsigned free agents that are available, such as Michael Wacha, Dylan Bundy and Chris Archer. Recent reporting has indicated that the club is reluctant to cross the final luxury tax tier of $293MM, with their competitive balance tax figure currently at $292.48MM per the calculations of Roster Resource, though they could always pivot as circumstances change.
There’s also the trade route, with Chris Flexen of the Mariners and Adrian Houser a couple of starters that make speculative sense as trade candidates. Though with Cortes still hoping to be ready for the start of the season, it’s also possible that no moves will be necessary.
Poor Guy, is he gonna miss opening day?
Where you at Wacha?
San Diego I think
Barring a setback, no. He’s already been gearing up for the WBC.
Why would he miss opening day? The Yankees just don’t want any of their players to play in the WBC.
Fever Pitch Guy
bure – The better question is, why does it matter if he’s not ready for Opening Day.
He’s not pitching Opening Day even if he was 100% healthy.
Cole is the #1 pitcher on the team, hands down.
Poster formerly unknown as . . .
Cole is the most expensive Yankee pitcher — or the most expensive pitcher anywhere, for that matter — but he’s not the #1 pitcher by measure of performance. Nestor Cortes was the Yankees’ ace in 2022.
I believe Rodon (if he stays healthy) will be the true Yankees ace this year. I like Cole, I’m glad we should e Cole in our side, but he’s performing in accordance with the money they’re paying him.
Nah its a hamstring strain and Nestor doesn’t use his lower body much in his delivery. Just give him a stool to sit on and he will probably deliver the same results. He also seems to be the only member of their rotation that plays with his heart. As long as he is medically cleared I doubt he misses much time. Severino would probably miss half the season with the same injury. Except I’m pretty sure its a contract year for him. I bet we see rookie year Severino if it is. Rortvedt will be healthy this year too. Should be an exciting year to watch the pitchers.
OK, it doesn’t matter.
Got it. Drive leg, plant leg. All the same. Got it.
This is why I put little stock in this “classic”
And this is why we can’t have nice things….
Well, there you go Cashman – at least we saved money! And thankfully the Yankees have a couple MLB-ready pitchers in Waldichuck & Sears. Oh, oops. You traded them so the Yankees could provide Montas with an 18-month IL vacation.
You really wanted Waldichuk with his 4.93ERA? Neither of those guys are better than German or Schmidt. Use your brain.
The problem is depth, in case you missed the point. Sevy is questionable at best. Cashman traded the only two capable depth pieces. If I had my choice between 4.93 ERA ball for his first year and having no viable starting pitching…. Yeah, I’ll take the lefty as insurance against injury.
That’s exactly right clipper. And besides, we know how transparent or accurate the Yankees are with their reporting of injuries. They minimize them to start with, and then before you know it, the players out for the season.
True, Doc. I fully expect Montas to be out the entire season.
Yes, I would prefer to have them over Montas. That trade baffled me. Manaea was the A’s pitcher to target last year. I know he was gone and injured by then but Montas was pretty far from what they needed. Especially after Monty was traded. Still don’t understand why Cashman didn’t get Manaea when he was available after watching him pitch as well as he did in NY.
Big loss for team USA. Get well soon Nestor! Yankees need you!
A guy named “Freeland” playing for Team USA. ‘Merica!
It’s free real estate!
Was looking forward to cheering on Nestor with Team USA.
Hopefully this doesn’t impact his season.
Ooof. Worrisome for NYY.
Why, when Nestor had his highest innings load in 2022, did Cashman give him the green light to pitch in the meaningless (because he’s a MLB player under contract) WB Classic…..its a mystery but certainly now the Yankees have several starting pitching question marks (Sevy, Montas who was the biggest mistake, and now Nestor) going into Spring Training…….let alone wondering how the bullpen will work out……..Cash has turned a strength into a weakness in less than 30 days……..
They try to stop all their players from appearing in WBC.
There’s no “try”. Either the player has permission to play or they don’t. There’s zero obligation for any team to permit a contracted player to participate.
If Cashman had denied Cortes permission, yankee fans would be ripping him.
As if Cashman, or any FO exec, cares about such a thing.
If you don’t think the Yankees have tried in the past to stop there players from playing in the wbc or didn’t try to influence them this year, I’ve got a interesting investment opportunity for you that I’m now convinced I can get you to donated every cent you’ve ever made into.
It’s their prerogative to give permission or not to the player. There is no need to influence the player or “try” to negotiate anything.
This could have just as easily happened in spring training. I think the Cardinals are pleased so many of their starting players are in the WBC to get ready for the season. They have a lot of young players who need spring training reps.
Probably the same reason Boone thought it was a good decision to show the Red Sox miraculous comeback against the Yankees in their worst moment in franchise history, instead of, say…the fantastic one-hour documentary on the 1998 NY Yankees. Or, perhaps just show the interviews with Oneill & Jeter who said the 1997 playoff appearance was a failure because they didn’t win.
Not a Yankees fan so no sour grapes over this injury but stuff like this is why I’ve never been a fan of the WBC.
100%. Agree with that statement
I don’t really get the hate here for allowing a player to go pitch in the WBC. We’ve seen players injured falling down the stairs in their own homes and from celebrating walkoffs. With pitchers and catchers reporting soon, MOST MLB pitchers have very likely been doing their own training routines already.
Readers here may not care about the WBC, but it’s far from meaningless. Most of the players are extremely proud to play for their countries. It’s not like they’re doing this to collect a paycheck or something.
Yankees should be able to get by just fine with German and Schmidt as back of the rotation arms for now. My bigger concern would be Montas anyways. I always thought it sounded like he had an injury that required surgery around the TDL last year. Going to be a disaster of a move if he ends up missing most or the entire year.
I think your interpretation is a bit off. Nobody here is hating on the WBC (from what I’m reading), and Yankees fans aren’t upset by pitchers participating. What Yankees fans are saying is this: 1 SP (Montas) may be out for the year; last season Cashman traded away the SP depth; the Yankees are in contention for a World Series (the favorites again), which has eluded them the past five years; Sevy has been seriously injured each year leading up to this one; and Rodon had an bury history.
To summarize, it’s not about the WBC or Cortez’ participation ( in a vacuum ). Rather, it’s about the *current state* of the Yankees roster, their expectations, & the fact that we are already going to be down 2/5 of the starting rotation without comparable replacements. Add to that the Yankees are buttressed against the CBT and will not spend money or prospects to acquire an appropriate replacement and it’s a recipe for disaster.
Do folks realize they play like a max of 6 games and SP innings are limited? These guys legitimately get the equivalent of like 1-2 start’s worth of innings max, and don’t play as much in Spring Training. Not sure anyone going is getting any extra workload than they would ordinarily would leading up until the MLB OD.
You are correct, however the WBC would naturally elicit postseason (higher stress) style innings for a pitcher because it’s a championship tournament. Conversely, pitching many more low stress innings while building up one’s arm in Spring Training is very slow, deliberate, and relatively stress-free on a pitcher’s arm.
Yankee Clipper – Good points, I think this can be true, but I think the fact that he was to pitch in the WBC was good for the Yankees. He is just starting to ramp up right now. He can still work his other leg up and that is his driving leg. If he was not in the WBC this could have happened later when spring training starts, giving him less time to recover and more pressure to push his recovery.
@mostlytoasty The WBC is completely annoying af. Our best player on the Mariners, Julio Rodriguez, is planning on attending. If something were to happen to him, God forbid, on the basepaths or running into the wall, Mariners season would be ruined. And I’m sure the risk is higher for any pitcher who decides to play. I don’t see how any fan of any team could be comfortable with their best players possibly getting hurt in a meaningless tournament exhibition. It’s not like it’s the Olympics geez. That would be playing for your country, not this pointless WBC tourney.
And so it begins. Another injury riddled season for the Yanks.
Cry me a river. Happens to most teams!
Yep. I have zero sympathy considering what Tigers went through last year on the IL.
Then you had the following guys forget to hit
As if anyone cares about the tigers. Go taste yourself idiot.
Good one easy. A Tigers fan making a comment on a MLB trade rumors website is ridiculous. Enjoy the trailer park son.
Why would I want go where you live?
Sorry,not into your fetishes.
Every comment I have seen from Easygas44 has been mind-numbingly idiotic and typical trolling drooling behavior. Okay Mute Button deployed.
“Cortes still believes he will be ready for Opening Day of the regular season”
Reportedly he won’t be throwing off the mound for two weeks. I’m guessing maybe his first bullpen off a mound will be mid-March after he ramps back up. Cortes may be ready, if all goes well, but probably pushed back to the last rotation spot to give him more time.
Grade 2 and making Opening Day? Absolutely no chance of that happening.
just_thinking. Depends what leg it is. If it’s his left leg, his push-off leg, then no. It will likely affect him all season, if it’s his right leg, his landing leg, then he’ll get over it quick enough.
Maybe it’s in the link and I just missed it, but not reporting which leg it is, is bad reporting.
According to the NY Post… a “low grade two” hamstring strain in his right leg – pushoff leg.
He’s left-handed, his right leg is his landing leg.
That’s much less of a problem than his push-off leg.
I stand corrected.
We know how transparency Yankees are with their pitchers injuries. A minor problem turns into a season ending surgery.
Grade 2 is 3 to 8 weeks, we will see!
Slider, it would simply be worse if it was his pushoff leg.
He’ll still need two healthy legs to pitch!
Well, if he breaks the index finger on his right hand, is not as much of a setback as breaking the index finger on his left hand?
Heck. one pitcher pitched without a right arm.
If the hamstring injury is to his landing leg, he can still keep his left leg at full strength and be ready much more quickly to drive off the mound.
Which leg a pitcher hurt is a big deal.
One leg you need to drive, the other you need to land. I know this is obvious, but which do you think needs to be at full strength?
Poster formerly unknown as . . .
When a pitcher alters his mechanics even a little bit to compensate for an injury, he can injure another part of his body. It’s happened before.
“The pitching motion is a kinetic chain, in which the force generated by the large muscles of the lower extremity and trunk during the wind-up and stride phases are transferred to the ball through the shoulder and elbow during the cocking and acceleration phases. Numerous kinematic factors have been identified that increase shoulder and elbow torques, which are linked to increased risk for injury.
“Altered knee flexion at ball release, early trunk rotation, loss of shoulder rotational range of motion, increased elbow flexion at ball release, high pitch velocity, and increased pitcher fatigue may increase shoulder and elbow torques and risk for injury.”
Poster formerly unknown as . . .
But wait! There’s more!
“Reduced ROM or hip instability results in subtle, maladaptive compensation throughout the throwing motion, as force that is not properly transmitted throughout the kinetic chain places an increased burden on the distal elements, resulting in accumulation of damage through repeated activity. In addition, injuries to the ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) have been correlated with hip/groin pathology both prior to and after UCL surgery, and although the nature of this relationship is not well-understood, it provides further evidence that altered hip mechanics can be related to both proximal LE injuries and dysfunction of distal kinetic chain components.”
All true, but I don’t understand the point. A push off leg vs a landing leg. There is a difference.
Poster formerly unknown as . . .
The point being that favoring either leg can lead to an alteration in mechanics that, however subtle, can lead to other injuries, as the cited texts say:
“The pitching motion is a kinetic chain, in which the force generated by the large muscles of the lower extremity and trunk during the wind-up and stride phases are transferred to the ball through the shoulder and elbow during the cocking and acceleration phases. Numerous kinematic factors have been identified that increase shoulder and elbow torques, which are linked to increased risk for injury.”
“altered hip mechanics can be related to both proximal LE injuries and dysfunction of distal kinetic chain components.”
The motion in delivering a pitch, as these writers say, is a chained sequence of movements involving different muscle groups. The body is one mechanism with different parts that can’t be segregated from the other parts in a motion that involves them all.
The first of many of my fantasy targets to be injured.
Left or right leg? If it’s the drive leg, then its a big deal. If it’s the landing leg, it’s much less of a deal.
He was on my list of “relative” unknowns last year. Of course, I landed him in -0- leagues, so I am guessing he was less unknown than I thought.
Hardo, who is hardo. It’s so easy to mute ignoramuses. If a blow hard whines in the forest, will anyone hear his belches? .
Oooooook hardo. It’s his left testicle, take only that one off your draft list peckerhead.
Yankees already in mid-season form oof
Here we go, the Yankees usual parade of injuries that they will not be prepared for as usual. Isn’t it so nice if they let Taillon go ,and thought Montgomery was superfluous. A strength as quickly turning into a weakness, we already had a serious lack of pitching depth due to all the minor league pitchers traded away case for the so far horrendous Montas deal. Never montas becomes more important, who knows what you could get out of him.
The Yanks need a Starter and a LF the Mets have both for you Carrasco and Canha for Loaisiga, Clarke-Schmidt and Gleyber Torres, the Mets can put Torres at 2b and McNeil in LF and let Loaisiga, Schmidt, Peterson and Megill battle for the 5th spot
As a Mets fan I wouldn’t mind subtracting Carrasco. But I like Canha and want him to stay. Can they send Pham to the Bronx instead? 😉
You value Carasco and Canha rather high. Not sure why the Yankees would give up that much youth in arbitration years for a number 5 and a platoon player.
Zero chance the two teams will make a deal like that, but if they did, it would babe to be beneficial from both sides. Your suggestion is a Mets-centric deal.
And now the Yanks are facepalming themselves and wondering why they didn’t give the QO to Taillon or offer him an extension.
There’s only about 500K left in the budget.
Didn’t Cortes have a hamstring issue in September? If so, I’d have a greater concern that this might be a potential chronic issue. Regardless, rather have an injury occur now than in one month.
I know many fans don’t want players on their favorite teams to play in the WBC, but on fine with it, but on a case-by-case basis. Severino, as example, should not play. He shouldn’t have even attempted to play based on his injury history. Knowing how much time he’s missed after he signed his extension, and knowing this is his free agent walk year, he should not have placed the Yankees in the situation to say no. He should have known.
Cortez had a groin issue, not a hamstring.
Thanks. I feel better now. I think. : -)
A groin injury is worse than a landing leg injury.
Jays will annihilate the yankees in 2023
Jays fans were saying that in 2022, too.
A grade 2 strain could take several weeks for full recovery. A chance he’s not ready for the start of the season, but fortunately, doesn’t sound too serious.
In other news, Jeter will be joining A-Rod and Big Papi in the Fox booth.
I’m curious how that will work out. Jeter by nature prefers the high road in public, keeping his thoughts close to his best. To be an analyst he’ll need to be more open. Seems to go against his instincts.
Not sure if you use Instagram but he’s openly showing a lot more personality lately. I’m looking forward to seeing the trio together.
He didn’t take the high road when he threw the fans under the bus after they rightfully booed Hal on Paulie Night.
Poster formerly unknown as . . .
You expected Jeter to take the side of booing fans over the family who filled his bank account for 20 years?
It’s a Grade 2 pulled from the baseball “Classic” LOL
Maybe this will stop him from doing all that clown wind-up crap.
Poster formerly unknown as . . .
Struck out one of your team’s batters with that wind-up crap, did he?
I love it.
And I could watch this kind of thing all day: