Yankees’ Carlos Rodon regresses after promising stretch: ‘It sucks’

BALTIMORE — Carlos Rodon went from his best two starts of the season to his worst.

The Yankees’ left-hander gave up three solo home runs on Thursday, and that was before a four-run fifth inning he did not make it out of in a 7-2 loss to the Orioles at Camden Yards.

“Good hitting team, but got to be better with where I’m throwing the ball and try to limit the long ball and get out sooner,” Rodon said. “It sucks.”
Yankees’ Carlos Rodon regresses after promising stretch: ‘It sucks’Carlos Rodon pitches during the Yankees’ loss to the Orioles on May 2, 2024. USA TODAY Sports

Coming into Thursday, Rodon had given up just three hits and one run across 13 innings in his past two starts, lowering his season ERA to 2.48.

But he was not nearly as sharp against the Orioles, giving up seven runs (six earned) on eight hits — plenty of loud contact — and two hit batters in four-plus innings while striking out six.

Rodon regretted the pitch locations on the three home runs he gave up to Ryan Mountcastle (a slider below the zone), Jorge Mateo (a first-pitch fastball down the middle) and Ryan McKenna (a cutter near the middle of the plate).

The Orioles then broke the game open in the fifth with some help from a Gleyber Torres error.

“They’re strong top to bottom,” Rodon said. “They had a good approach and they stuck with it and executed on it. I wish I would have done some things differently to invoke some more swing and miss. Just wasn’t good enough.”

Alex Verdugo was activated off the paternity list Thursday morning after taking a Wednesday night redeye from Arizona and arriving here around 7 a.m.

He went 1-for-3 with a walk out of the six-hole, but manager Aaron Boone indicated Verdugo would likely move back to the cleanup spot on Friday.
Yankees’ Carlos Rodon regresses after promising stretch: ‘It sucks’Yankees outfielder Alex Verdugo was activated off the paternity list. Getty Images

Jon Berti (left groin strain) resumed his rehab assignment Thursday at Double-A Somerset after sitting out Wednesday with stiff back.

He could potentially rejoin the Yankees by Friday.

… Nick Burdi (right hip inflammation) threw a second bullpen session on Thursday at Somerset.

He is then expected to pitch in a rehab game on Sunday with Somerset before likely returning to the Yankees.

… Gerrit Cole (elbow nerve inflammation) had a light day of throwing Thursday.

Boone had not talked to Carlos Mendoza, as of Thursday morning, but he had some sympathy for his former bench coach after the Mets lost Wednesday night on a play at the plate — even if he didn’t necessarily agree with Mendoza’s assessment that the umpires got the call wrong in not calling obstruction.

“We get clarification on that thing all year long, every winter,” Boone said. “It’s always nuanced and gray and not perfect. We’re all kind of talking about it today and everyone has a different take. It’s not a perfect rule, not a perfect setup.

“My take was I know when you put your foot on the plate, you jeopardize yourself of the potential for an illegal call, but it’s not an automatic, which is definitely not a black-and-white thing. It did seem like he had at least a lane to the plate and was probably out, but I certainly understand being on that side of it questioning it.”

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