The Yankees are looking to Triple-A closer Greg Weisert to help the unsettled bullpen
Aaron Boone, at this late date in the season, is trying to decide how to deploy his bullpen and may have a few more pieces to consider soon, including Triple-A closer Greg Weissert and the rehabbing Zack Britton.
With Scott Efros (shoulder) joining Clay Holmes (back) on the injured list and Aroldis Chapman returning to unreliable, Boone has an unsettled picture at the end of the game three quarters of the way through the schedule. He says the plan for now is to mix and match to try to determine a consistent pen back.
The return of Holmes, who the Yankees are currently optimistic will be back when his IL tenure ends next Monday, is likely to return to an important role immediately, possibly back to closing.
As for other options, the Yankees actually considered promoting Weissert for the weekend series against Toronto, thinking his slider against the Blue Jays’ strong right-handed lineup could be a factor, Boone told The Post. But with the lefty-leaning Mets trailing, the Yankees decided to hold out and called up journeyman Luke Bard.
But Weissert is now part of any discussion about relief options. He has not allowed a run in his last 22 outings (23 innings), striking out 33 against five walks. The Bay Shore, N.Y. native has 18 saves in Triple-A this year with a 1.77 ERA, .145 average against and .462 OPS against. The 27-year-old, an 18th-round pick in the 2016 draft, must either make the 40-man roster this offseason or be eligible to be selected in the Rule 5 draft.
Britton has not played this season since undergoing Tommy John surgery last September 9. If his rehab goes smoothly, he’ll be considered an option for the Yankees around the one-year anniversary — around the same time that Miguel Castro and Luis Severino are also on a comeback trajectory.
Britton had a bullpen session Sunday at the minor league complex in Tampa and should have another on Wednesday. At that point, the Yankees will decide whether to send him to minor league rehab, possibly with their team, Tampa.
If everything goes perfectly (which is rare), the Yankees will have to decide which pitchers are eligible for the final weeks of the season. Rosters expand to 28 on Sept. 1, but the limit is 14 pitchers and Britton, Castro, Severino, Weisert and Albert Abreu are on the radar.