The state of pitching within the Yankees organziation seems to constantly be in flux as the team prepares to get things ready for October. That means a plethora of pitching notes as personnel shuffles around.

Danny Coulombe Returns to Yankees System

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After being released by the Yankees July 1 and landing with Milwaukee’s minor leagues for a few weeks, lefty Danny Coulombe has returned to the Yankees organization. He signed officially August 31 so he could be postseason eligible, and had been stashed on the roster of inactive High-A Tampa.

He appeared in 14 games for Triple-A San Antonio before opting out of his deal with the Brewers. He returned to the RailRiders and pitched for the first time Tuesday. The veteran lefty has a 5.01 ERA across 17 outings (23⅓ innings) in both RailRiders stints.

Rosenthal: Yankees Almost Had Ken Giles Deal

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The Yankees quiet trade deadline this year almost wasn’t so, as The Athletic‘s Ken Rosenthal reported the Yankees backed out of a deal that would have sent three prospect to Toronto for lights-out reliever Ken Giles.

From the notes piece:

“The trade, of course, never happened, and the Yankees backed off too late for the Jays to complete a deal with another club. The most logical explanation is that the Yankees had concerns about Giles’ elbow, though teams had prior access to his medical records and several factored the risk into their offers, sources said.

Giles had visited Dr. Keith Meister in Dallas on July 30, the day before the deadline. An MRI revealed no structural damage in his elbow, but upon Meister’s recommendation, the pitcher received a cortisone shot, and wound up being sidelined from July 28 to Aug. 3.”

Ken Rosenthal, The Athletic (subscription required/recommended)

The Yankees had been linked to Giles and teammate Marcus Stroman, who Toronto dealt to the Mets for a much lesser package than the one demanded from the Yankees. The Jays, of course, were rumored to be demanding No. 1 prospect Deivi García, but wound up accepting a duo of pitchers from Queens.

Since the trade deadline, Giles owns a 4.00 ERA (4.11 FIP) in nine innings of work. The full season is another success for Giles, where he rocks a 2.05 ERA (2.10 FIP) and 14.93 strikeouts per nine innings.

Giles has another year of arbitration eligibility remaining, and then he will be a free agent following the 2020 season. It seems reasonable to assume Toronto will look to deal him at some point before 2020’s trade deadline.

Yankees Release David Hernandez

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The David Hernandez experiment didn’t work out for the Yankees, who decided to release the veteran righty after he was released by Cincinnati. He was in the second year of a 2-year, $5 million contract when the Reds decided to be done with him. He posted an 8.02 ERA (4.34 FIP) in 47 outings (42⅔ innings).

The Yankees scooped him up on a minor-league deal and the results weren’t exactly pretty. In eight outings for the RailRiders, Hernandez posted a still-ugly 7.71 ERA and a disturbingly-high 10.3 walks per nine. His 14.1 strikeouts per nine certainly was impressive, but his command clearly is not strong enough to help an MLB contender at the moment.

Rehabbing Players Transferred to Trenton

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With Hurrican Dorian threatening Florida and the mid-Atlantic region, rehabbing arms Dellin Betances, Jordan Montgomery and Luis Severino all had their rehab assignments transferred to Double-A Trenton. Betances is set to begin his rehab in real games, while Montgomery (who threw three innings before turning things over to Clarke Schmidt) and Severino look to continue their path back to the big leagues.

It’s worth noting that Thairo Estrada (out since August 18 with right hamstring strain) has also been spotted with the Thunder as they prepare for the Eastern League playoffs.

On a separate note, the Yankees plan to keep rehabbing righty Ben Heller and catcher Kyle Higashioka with Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre for the entirety of the International League/Triple-A playoffs.

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