Taillon suffered injuries throughout his career, but his first start for the Yankees went well. His coffee expertise is a bonus.
Since the Yankees traded for Jameson Taillon in January, the reviews over their new starting pitcher are largely as follows: He looks healthy and has improved after almost two years away with injuries; his playful personality has been a welcome addition to the game. 'equipe; and he knows how to make good coffee.
"Sometimes I don't let him go out and do what he needs to do until, if I need one cup of coffee, he brews it right in his locker, "manager Aaron Boone said with a smile on Wednesday.
The Yankees, of course, don 't haven't done 't send four prospects to the Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for Taillon just for a caffeine boost. Their starting rotation, after Masahiro leaves Tanaka and James Paxton, was painfully thin, so the Yankees made the potentially high-paying bet of acquiring two pitchers - Corey Kluber , two-time Cy Young award winner, and Taillon, a former second pick in the draft - who had teamed up to start an inning since May 1, 2019, due to injuries.
That date, until he left on Wednesday, was the last time Taillon, 29, had pitched in a game Championship, lasting 707 days. And although the Yankees (3-3) lost to the Baltimore Orioles, 4-3, in 11 innings, it was a milestone for Taillon, whose body has so suffered throughout his career.
"This is going to sound cheesy, but I'll never take a day in a big league uniform for granted, that 'is safe, "Taillon said in a video call with reporters after Wednesday's game. " I was super happy to be there.
Taillon's last absence was Tom's surgerymy John, the elbow ligament replacement procedure that has become so common in baseball. Although recovery for surgery is typically 12 to 15 months, there are many success stories, including Jacob deGrom, two-time winner of the Cy Young Award; 2019 World Series Most Valuable Player Stephen Strasburg; and the John Smoltz Hall of Fame. But this was Tommy John de Taillon's second surgery - his first was in 2014 - and the odds are bleaker when a pitcher's throwing elbow is repaired twice.
"I'm well aware of what the Tommy John Twice Guy story is," said Taillon, who missed the point. season 2015 because of sports hernia operation and who conquered testicular cancer in 2017. "There are guys in the big league who have done it. but I want to be one of the stats positive. ”
After his secondWith my elbow surgery, Taillon feared his career might be over if he couldn't find a solution. So, with help from the Florida Baseball Ranch, a Lakeland, Florida facility that uses diagnostics to improve health and performance, Taillon overhauled the way he throws a baseball . He has learned to use his legs more and his right arm takes a shorter path.
He has also adapted his pitching philosophy to a more contemporary one. To combat the uppercut swings common today, more pitchers are throwing four-seam fastballs into the strike zone. Close friend of Taillon and former teammate of the Pirates Gerrit Cole achieved this evolution when he was traded to the Houston Astros ahead of the 2018 season.
With help from the Astros 's analysis-focused front office, Cole gave up the fastball two-seamed, flowing, which he used more often in Pittsburgh. He quickly became one of baseball's elite pitchers and signed a nine-year, 324 million agreement dollars with the Yankees ahead of the 2020 season.
Just like he did in spring training, Taillon looked like to another pitcher on Wednesday. It sounded, he admitted, almost like the start of a new career. He didn't throw a two-seam fastpitch to the Orioles. He noticed hitters qui were beating their fast balls at 94 miles per hour, whereas a few years ago a 97 m.p.h. the lead would be slammed.
"His fastball was pretty much alive " Yankees second baseman D.J. LeMahieu said.
One of the things Taillon said he missed the most, in a weird way, was being mad at himself during a competition . The reason: He cleared two solo circuits on Wednesday. Still, he struck out seven batters in four and two-thirds innings. Boone held Taillon on 74 shots and had scheduled his debut for the Yankees' Game 6 of the season because the team relieves him after being out for so long.
"He's going to help us a lot " said wide receiver Gary Sanchez, who oversaw a pitching team that led the major leagues with an average. earned runs of 1.74 for Thursday's games.
After leaving Wednesday's game, Taillon crossed the canoe high up. five of his teammates, but he cracked a smile when he saw Cole. Even after Cole was traded to the Astros, they were in frequent contact. As the Pirates' spring training roommates, they spent hours talking about baseball and pitching, sometimes over the wine Cole chose and also a "five star" meal prepared by him, Taillon said. One d when the Yankees were considering a trade for Taillon over the winter, Cole offered a rave review of his former teammate to his bosses upon request. Image Like Taillon, Corey Kluber was a high-risk, high-reward signing for the Yankees. He threw well on his first start and will geta second round in the rotation on Friday. Credit ... John Minchillo / Associated Press
"He helped me a lot with my mechanics; I sent him videos, and he got me kept really encouraged, "Taillon said." Everyone understands what I've been through, but he really understands because he's known me for a long time. So he just made a comment on 'Welcome back ' and 'first of many '. "
Friday, the Yankees will send Kluber, Taillon's rotation mate, to the mound against the Tampa Bay Rays , which kept them from winning the American League Eastern League title last year and making it through the second round of the playoffs. In his first start of the season, Kluber allowed a earned run, a made three and subtracted five points in quatre innings against the Toronto Blue Jays.
The Yankees, however, Kluber, who turns 35 on Saturday, signed an $ 11 million contract for just one year. Taillon is under the control of the team for two.
Although Taillon has spent more time rehabilitating himself than pitching since his draft in 2010, he believes better days are ahead. He said he understood the fact that his dreams coming out of high school, like winning 20 games in 15 straight seasons in the major leagues, might not come true. On Wednesday he was just happy to be back on the mound, with his buddy Cole nearby, and in a squad that is among the favorites to win a World Series title.
And the Yankees are delighted to be able to count on Taillon 's coffee expertise during the 162m regular season.tchs. Taillon, which maintained a coffee blog and a his own blend , loves to share his coffee to pour with his new teammates.
" C ' is a coffee lover "said Boone this month.