The New York Yankees in April – Part Two – The Pitchers (2022)

The Yankees were able to call on their main five starting pitchers throughout April, without any of them suffering injury. Gerrit Cole, Luis Severino, Jordan Montgomery, Jameson Taillon and Nestor Cortes were available from Opening day, and remained that way.

Domingo German remained on the injured list but the Yankees had anticipated that. There were no new faces amongst the starting pitchers and only a smattering among the relievers. Based on last season, the fanbase wouldn’t be too sure what to expect from this arrangement but as we have already suggested in our article about the batters, things worked out just fine as, after a few bumps, the team cruised to the head of the division.

Let’s see who did paricularly well, as we look at the stats in table form:

* indicates left handed pitcher. No asterisk indicates right-handed pitcher.

Aroldis Chapman* (RP)000.001008058.12006110.96
JP Sears* (RP)100.00201002.0200121.50
Michael King (RP)200.696020113.010213201.00
Clay Holmes (RP)100.8411020210.27112110.84
Clarke Schmidt (RP)121.23300007.1321470.95
Nestor Cortes* (SP)101.314400020,215433280.87
Miguel Castro (RP)202.161001008.1522771.44
Wandy Peralta* (RP)002.45701007.1522431.23
Jordan Montgomery* (SP)012.704400020.014665150.95
Gerrit Cole (SP)203.005500024.0188810271.17
Jameson Taillon (SP)113.264400019.122772171.24
Luis Severino (SP)203.324400019.017776191.21
Chad Green (RP)113.86900009.11054481.50
Lucas Luetge* (RP)104.91904007.1744491.50
Jonathan Loaisiga (RP)016.001000009.0866591.44
Ron Marinaccio (RP)0011.25402004.0655262.00
New York Yankees – Pitchers in April 2022 in order of ERA


The Yankees’ starters began the season exceedingly slowly on the whole, but it didn’t matter too much because the bullpen were in fine fettle until the members of the rotation found their groove. Gerrit Cole who had mixed times in 2021, didn’t live up to expectations in any of his first three starts, but he didn’t take any losses because the relievers were able to shore up his difficulties. On the 8th, against the Boston hitters, he lasted only four innings – giving up three runs. He lasted slightly longer in his next start but fared no better, but it was against Detroit on the 15th that he fared worst, lasting less than two innings.

In 2021, Cole had been heavily criticised by Minnesota Twin, Josh Donaldson, who accused him of applying an illegal “sticky stuff” to the ball – now Donaldson was a team-mate. All the evidence suggests that Cole is a confidence pitcher and who knows what tricks his mind was playing with Donaldson behind him in the infield. Whatever the situation, Cole was able to settle in time for his fourth start and pitched 12 2/3 innings over his next two starts without giving up a run.

2nd starter, Severino struggled in his season debut, lasting only 3 innings as the Red Sox gave him trouble as they had done for Cole. Once again though, the bullpen was able to haul it back and the Yankees finished with a win. His remaining three starts in April were a little uneven at times but resulted in 2 wins and no losses.

Jordan Montgomery, in his sixth season with the Yankees, lost the game to Detroit on the 21st, despite conceding only one run. Indeed, he was the principal victim of a lack of run support which resulted in no wins on the month, especially when, despite pitching 5 scoreless innings against Baltimore on the 15th, the game still resulted in a 1-2 defeat for the New York team.

Next, we must conside Jameson Taillon who came through the month 1-1 with a 3.26 ERA and a 1.24 WHIP. He didn’t too badly, but lost his first appearance of the season to Toronto, and didn’t last more than five innings in any of this month’s starts.

It is a positive joy to round off this survey of the starting stock, by turning to Nestor Cortes. Nestor was a true surprise last year, but they seldom seemed confident to rely on him too much – they didn’t often make the decision to leave him on the mound until the end of the 5th inning which would make a solid start a win. They started the season on the same footing with him this time around. In his first game, he conceded no runs, but after 4 1/3 innings they lifted him – they won the game on the momentum he provided. Second time out, Aaron Boone displayed a little more conviction about his fifth starter as “Nasty” Nestor struck out 12 and remained in place for 5 whole innings. No runs were offered from the Yankee bats and for once the bullpen crumbled. No win for Nestor again. Third appearance and he was allowed to stretch his time to 6 1/3 innings. This time, he conceded his first two runs of the season, but the bullpen delivered up the win. It was the 29th of the month in Kansas City before Cortes was able to gain his first win. He conceded one earned run, but for the first time, he looked hittable. One win, an ERA and WHIP which were the best amongst the starting pitcher. It’s getting harder and harder to believe that Nestor is a short-term fluke.


There was an inkling that all was not exactly right with Aroldis Chapman in April. Although he tied the team’s ERA lead during the month – and led amongst regularly used pitchers – he walked six players in 8 1/3 innings. Still he picked up 5 saves and a 0.96 WHIP, so maybe it was just early season kinks in his mechanics.

Michael King and Clay Holmes made strong starts to the season which the New York team could not neccesarily have anticipated before the season began. Holmes has been so far ahead of the player he appeared to be when he was with Pittsburgh and seems to be gradually improving on even his Yankees’ performance of 2021. King had a slightly higher WHIP but picked up two wins as the bullpen gave the rotation opportunity to come together after a poor start.

By contrast, Clarke Schmidt was unfortunate indeed to pick up two losses. He delivered up a 1.23 ERA across 7 1/3 innings as he appears to be capable of bringing long and short relief, if he can leave his injury problems behind him.

The tall-and-lean Miguel Castro had a short journey when he moved from Queens to the Bronx in an exchange for Joely Rodriguez. The Yankees had nothing to lose in giving up Rodriguez to the Mets. In fact, they had declined the club’s option before re-signing him at a lower wage level than the option would have required. Castro has done well so far, but I need a little time before I am convinced in him as a long-term investment.

Wandy Peralta continues to prove himself as a mop-up man and occasionally-used reliever. He is unlikely to be making the headlines, but he only gave up 2 runs in 7 1/3 innings which will do fine for one of the low men on the totem pole.

Chad Green and Jonathan Loaisiga are two of the highest rated relievers in baseball, but both had uncomfortable times in late April. Green was pilloried in the New York press and on fan sites, conceding 10 hits and 4 walks in less than ten innings. Things were worse for Loaisiga with a 6.00 ERA and a 1.44 WHIP by the end of the month. This wasn’t what the Yankees were expecting.

Lucas Luetge was another of last season’s unexpected successes – but in 2022 so far, he lost his way somewhat. Both in ERA and WHIP, his struggles are revealed and he is someone else who needs to tighten up his act.

The two pitchers that the Yankees carried until the 1st of May, with the allowance of an extra two players been given because of the shortened Spring Training, were JP Sears and Ron Marinaccio. Sears claimed a win from his two appearances in April but watch that WHIP column, it rather suggests he was riding his luck. No such fortune for Marinaccio. He appeared in more games, but after a couple of good outings, his appearances on the 24th and 28th of the month told a different story.

New York Yankees – Best pitchers in April 2022 – 1 to 5 (From LtoR): Nestor Cortes, Michael King,
Clay Holmes, Aroldis Chapman, Clay Mongomery

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