Yankees designate right-hander David Carpenter for assignment
SEATTLE — The Yankees planned on having David Carpenter handle important seventh-inning situations for them this season, but the right-hander was unable to find his footing that role and was designated for assignment on Wednesday morning.
Carpenter was cut loose in order to clear a roster spot for right-hander Masahiro Tanaka, who was activated from the 15-day disabled list to start Wednesday’s series finale against the Mariners at Safeco Field.
Carpenter, 29, was 0-1 with a 4.82 ERA in 22 appearances for New York, including serving up a go-ahead RBI double to the Mariners’ Austin Jackson in the sixth inning of New York’s 5-3, 11-inning victory over Seattle.
“For whatever reason, he never got on a roll for us,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. “At times, it was a struggle. He was someone that we expected to be a big part of our bullpen. He worked extremely hard, he was great in the clubhouse. It’s just unfortunate.”
Carpenter was acquired from the Braves along with left-hander Chasen Shreve in a New Year’s Day swap that sent left-hander Manny Banuelos to Atlanta. Carpenter owns a 3.73 ERA in 210 career appearances with the Astros (2011-12), Blue Jays (’12), Braves (2013-14) and Yankees.
“Sometimes it’s puzzling why things don’t happen,” Girardi said. “The guy worked and worked and worked; tried different things. We looked at a ton of different things to see if he was pitching different, sequences and everything. It really wasn’t a whole lot different. The only difference was, he wasn’t having success.”
Trimming Carpenter leaves the Yankees with five left-handed relievers, which is something of an oddity. In addition to closer Andrew Miller, the Yankees are carrying Chris Capuano, Jacob Lindgren, Shreve and Justin Wilson.
“The one thing is, our lefties have been successful in getting right-handers out,” Girardi said. “The bottom line is, if they get right-handers out as well as left-handers, you can deal with it. They’ve been pretty good at it.”
Girardi on Tanaka’s return: “I think there’s two things you look at. You look at his command and you look at the sharpness of his pitches. What you want to stay away from is obviously the long inning for him. Those are the two things we’re going to look at today. He’s probably built up to 80 pitches, 85 at the most. We’ll just watch him.”
Carlos Beltran had an X-ray after fouling a ball off his right foot last night, which was negative. Girardi said that he planned to give Beltran the day off anyway leading into Thursday’s off-day.
Girardi on Lindgren: “We’ve been pretty pleased with what he’s done, the way he’s pitched. He’s faced right-handers and it hasn’t seemed to bother him. He’s got a lot of movement, gets a lot of groundballs. That plays well for our park. Some of these bigger parks, you don’t worry about. But that plays well in our park.”
Girardi on the Triple-A relief options:
“We pay attention. You have some righties that have good stuff. [Jose] Ramirez has been up here. [Branden] Pinder has been up here. [Nick] Rumbelow’s another guy that they talk about. [Diego] Moreno’s another guy they talk about. I’m sure they’ll be watched closely because having all those lefties, I think at some point you’ll probably look for another right-hander, so I’m sure they’ll be watched closely.”