ALCS Game 2: Yankees starter Luis Severino feels 'fine' despite abrupt exit

·Yahoo Sports Contributor

New York Yankees fans got a bit of a scare when starting pitcher Luis Severino was abruptly removed from Game 2 of the American League Championship Series on Saturday. The 23-year-old right-hander looked sharp early, but was pulled after just four innings in the Yankees eventual 2-1 loss to the Houston Astros.

The circumstances surrounding his exit left most confused and concerned that he may have been dealing with an injury. The Yankees were clearly concerned too, removing him from the game after just 62 pitches after a he encountered a couple of awkward moments during the fourth inning.

Manager Joe Girardi provided some relief after the game though, noting that Severino had checked out fine after meeting with the team’s doctors. Severino added that he felt fine and expects to pitch again in the series if needed.

The if needed part is the Yankees biggest concern now after falling behind in the series 2-0. Though it still seems something wasn’t entirely right with Severino.

The developing ace appeared uncomfortable a couple pitches after allowing a fourth-inning home run to Carlos Correa. Girardi and the team’s athletic trainer visited Severino after he grabbed the rosin bag and windmilled his arm in an apparent attempt to get loose.

The game was delayed briefly while Correa’s home run was reviewed. It was questioned whether a young fan interfered with the home run, but replay confirmed he had not. It’s not known if that slight delay played a role in Severino’s apparent issue.

Yankees starting pitcher Luis Severino fields a ground ball hit by the Astros' Josh Reddick in Game 2 of MLB's American League Championship Series. (AP)
Yankees starting pitcher Luis Severino fields a ground ball hit by the Astros’ Josh Reddick in Game 2 of MLB’s American League Championship Series. (AP)

Severino remained in the game initially, but suffered another scare just a few pitches later when he was struck on his glove-hand wrist by a comebacker from Yuli Gurrierl. That play resulted in an inning-ending out, and was the last we saw of Severino. Reliever Tommy Kahnle entered in the fifth and pitched two scoreless innings.

Severino allowed just the one run on two hits and two walks. He did not record a strikeout, however. It’s the first time in his career that he’s pitched at least one inning without striking a batter out. Oddly, he also became just the fifth pitcher to not record a strikeout in two starts during the same postseason. Those were both possible because Severino was removed from his start in the AL wild-card game in the first inning.

The ALCS will head to New York for Game 3 on Monday. CC Sabathia will start for the Yankees. The Astros will counter with Charlie Morton.

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Mark Townsend is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at bigleaguestew@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!