Zack Britton’s 2021 season just keeps getting worse.
On Monday, the Yankees placed Britton on the injured list, retroactive to August 20, due to a left elbow sprain. For Britton, this is now his third separate stint on the shelf this season.
Britton has arguably had the worst campaign of his illustrious big-league career, which has not only been derailed by injuries, but has seen him look like a shell of his normal dominant self on the mound.
Since joining the Yankees midway through the 2018 season, Britton has been a reliable late-inning option out of the bullpen for manager Aaron Boone. However, the left-hander has thrown just 18.1 innings this year, where he has a 5.89 ERA, a 1.69 WHIP and 14 walks, while opposing hitters have produced a .262 average against him across 22 appearances.
The 33-year-old underwent arthroscopic surgery on his elbow back in spring training, which caused him to miss the first 2.5 months of the season. And although he made his season debut in mid-June, Britton returned to the IL a month later with a hamstring strain.
Fast forward another month to present day and here we are, with Britton going back on the IL with another issue in his elbow after tossing just 14 innings since coming back from his hamstring injury on July 18.
On the bright side, the Yankees activated reliever Clay Holmes from the COVID-19 injured list Monday to take Britton’s spot. Holmes was impressive in his brief stint after the Yankees acquired him from the Pirates ahead of the trade deadline, logging a 2.16 ERA in 8.1 innings for the Bronx Bombers.
In addition to reinstating Holmes, the Yankees also recalled outfielder Jonathan Davis from Triple-A Scranton and pulled Miguel Andujar (left wrist sprain) from his rehab assignment, placing him on the 60-day IL.
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