Prior to Thursday’s series opener against the Cleveland Indians, the Tampa Bay Rays have placed infielder Yandy Diaz on the 10-day Injured List, due to a left hand contusion that he suffered after being hit by a pitch during a game against the New York Yankees this past weekend.
In his place, the Rays have recalled left-handed pitcher Ryan Yarbrough from Triple-A Durham.
Diaz is having a breakout season for the Rays, who acquired him this past offseason from the Indians. Over 41 games thus far, Diaz has hit .256/.339/.500 with 9 HR over 180 plate appearances, finally tapping into the power that had long avoided during his days in the Indians’ system.
Diaz suffered his injury during Sunday’s game when a Chance Adams’ fastball ran up and in, drilling him in the hand.
Although the count was 1-2, Diaz thinks he was hit intentionally:
“Yeah,’’ Diaz said, via translator Manny Navarro. “I don’t know (why). Maybe because I hit two home runs off them at home (on May 11).’’
This is just another blurb in the blossoming tension forming between the Rays and Yankees, stemming from an incident towards the end of last season when Andrew Kittredge threw a pitch that went over Andrew Romine’s head. Sabathia retaliated by hitting Jesus Sucre, and then gestured towards the Rays dugout after he was ejected from the game.
Ryan Yarbrough rejoins the Rays after a month long stint in Durham (with the exception a weekend in which he was called up, but didn’t pitch). Although he struggled during the month of April with Tampa Bay, he has excelled with Durham since being demoted. Over four games — three starts — he has a 2.14 ERA / 2.23 FIP to go along with a 35.7 K% and 3.6 BB% over 21 innings pitched.
Yarbrough is slated to start tonight’s game against Cleveland.