TAMPA — Luis Severino’s comeback from Tommy John surgery is going according to plan, but the real test will be when the right-hander throws his breaking stuff for the first time.
“I’m not worried about it, I just want to know,” said Severino, who underwent elbow surgery just over a year ago and is expected back around midseason. “I want to start [to] throw breaking pitches and see how it feels, not just that day, but also the next day to see how my arm is recovering from throwing those pitches.”
He’s so far thrown a pair of bullpens – all with fastballs – and he impressed Aaron Boone and bullpen coach Mike Harkey with how free and easy – and hard – he was throwing as soon as his first bullpen.
He’ll continue to throw bullpens Tuesdays and Fridays until he’s ready to take the next step.
“I was feeling really good that [first] day and I’ve been feeling pretty good,” Severino said. “I didn’t know what to do in that first bullpen, so I treated it like a normal bullpen. They told me not to throw too hard so I tried to back up a little bit, but I was throwing good. A lot of strikes.”
Severino said taking his foot off the gas was somewhat difficult.
“I haven’t been that long out of the game,” Severino said. “I’m excited to be back on the mound. The first time, I tried to do a good job and be myself. Being myself means throwing hard, so it’s a little hard [not to], but I’ll do my best.”
While Severino continues his rehab, the Yankees are sorting out their rotation and he’s looking forward to getting back – and staying healthy.
“I don’t know [how long I’ll be out],” Severino said. “It’s the first time and hopefully the last time having Tommy John.”