Yankees reliever Zack Britton is set to have surgery to remove bone chips from his left elbow on Sept. 8, he told reporters on Tuesday. The Yankees moved Britton to the 60-day injured list on Monday. There's no timetable for his return, but it doesn't sound like the chances are good he'll be returning any time this season.
During the surgery, Britton's UCL will be assessed as well (via Lindsey Adler of The Athletic). As we all know by now, a torn UCL generally means Tommy John surgery. Britton stressed that it isn't the main concern, though (Adler).
Britton, 33, was great for the Yankees in 2019 and 2020, but 2021 has been a disaster for him. He's had the issue with bone spurs since March, dealt with a case of COVID-19 and had a hamstring injury. In the 22 appearances he's managed to take, he pitched to a 5.89 ERA and 1.69 WHIP. He's walked 14 in 18 1/3 innings. He even had to ask manager Aaron Boone to stop using him in closing situations because he was performing so poorly.
Knowing all this, it's probably safe to just remove Britton from the Yankees' bullpen in our minds as we analyze how things might go the rest of the season. Maybe they'll be better off, too, because there are plenty of arms out there working right now.
As currently constructed, Aroldis Chapman remains the closer and has high upside if he can get back on track. Righties Jonathan Loaisiga and Chad Green along with lefties Lucas Luetge, Joely Rodriguez and Wandy Peralta appear capable of high-leverage spots before the ninth even if there have been some hiccups of late. Righty Clay Holmes has been excellent since coming over in a trade from the Pirates, too.