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MLB Roundup 2/26: Luis Severino needs Tommy John surgery

A huge blow to the Yankees rotation.

Yankees right hander Luis Severino warming up his arm in spring training Photo by J. Conrad Williams, Jr./Newsday via Getty Images

Luis Severino to undergo Tommy John surgery

It’s been a little while since we’ve done one of these since the offseason is over and most of the news just isn’t all that relevant to the Red Sox. This one, I think, qualifies though. Luis Severino had apparently been feeling discomfort in his elbow since the end of last postseason but bizarrely it was never checked out. He finally got it checked out this week, and on Tuesday we learned that it was recommended he undergo Tommy John surgery. He is going to do just that later this week, which will cause him to miss the entire 2020 season.

First of all, that is obviously terrible news for Severino, who was poised to take a huge leap last season and cement himself as a top-tier pitcher in this league. Instead, he missed most of the season and pushed those hopes up to the 2020 season. Obviously, that will not happen now. As much as I hate seeing the Yankees succeed, Severino is super fun to watch and another season without him isn’t good as just a guy who likes to watch good pitchers.

As far as the effect on the Yankees, it’s hard to deny this is a big deal for them, particularly since they will be without James Paxton into at least May and Domingo Germán into June. That leaves them with a rotation of Gerrit Cole, Masahiro Tanaka, J.A. Happ and then a couple of spots up for grabs. Even with that, they still have a dynamic offense and a deep bullpen, so this team is certainly still the division favorites. That said, there is a real chance at regression from some of the breakouts from last year and with these injuries their overwhelming chances of winning the East are starting to fall a bit, at least.

Of course, the Red Sox are not in a great position themselves to take it. They have a path to winning the division, but it requires a ton going right in their rotation, and likely more than is realistic. ZiPs gives them about a five percent chance, which sounds about right. If they had Mookie Betts... Well, I don’t want to go down that road. We’ll be here all day.