The New York Yankees have been hit hard by COVID-19 at times this season.
The virus impacts every team differently, but New York has definitely gotten the short end of the stick.
After having to place six players on the COVID-19 list a couple of weeks ago, the Yankees are now dealing with another outbreak.
This time around, the team is dealing with the loss of Gerrit Cole.
Gerrit Cole has tested positive for the coronavirus, Aaron Boone says. #Yankees
— Brendan Kuty (@BrendanKutyNJ) August 3, 2021
Here’s everything you need to know about the ace’s absence.
How Long Will Cole Be Out?
Unless Cole registers two consecutive negative tests, the earliest he can return from the COVID-19 list is 10 days after the positive test.
It appears that would be on August 12.
He is likely to miss two starts in total—maybe three—and one of those starts was scheduled to happen on Tuesday night.
Let’s find out who took his place in that game.
Luis Gil Got The Call For Tuesday’s Game, And He Looked More Than Capable Of Holding Down The Fort While Cole Is Out
Luis Gil got the first start of his MLB career on Tuesday night in place of Cole.
Gil is one of New York’s top prospects and has pitched to a career 3.06 ERA at the minor league level.
Let’s just say this: The righty did not disappoint in his big-league debut.
He tossed six scoreless innings against the Baltimore Orioles, scattering four hits and a walk while striking out six.
He got the win, as the Yankees cruised to a 13-1 victory.
— MLB Stats (@MLBStats) August 4, 2021
Not a bad way to break into The Show.
Gil will almost certainly continue to fill the void in the rotation until Cole comes back, and if Gil is able to string one or two more impressive outings together, the Yankees might end up with no choice but to leave him on the MLB roster.
Checking In On The Yankees’ Playoff Hopes
The Yankees made several splashes at the MLB trade deadline, sending a message to the baseball world that they’re serious about saving their 2021 season.
New York is still facing a daunting six-game deficit in the American League East, but the team has pulled to within two games of a playoff spot in the Wild Card race.
The Oakland Athletics hold that all-important second Wild Card spot right now.
The Yankees are going to have a chance to make up some serious ground in that department later this month, as a massive four-game series with Oakland is on the schedule for August 26-29.
The fate of New York’s season could ultimately be determined by that four-game set.
The loss of Cole comes at a terrible time, but if Gil continues to step up like he did on Tuesday night, New York is going to be just fine while Cole is out.
It will be very interesting to monitor what the Yankees do with Gil once Cole returns.
Of course, Gil is going to have to prove that he’s able to repeat his success next time out (and the time after that), but if he continues to impress, he could become a key piece for the Yankees for the remainder of this season and beyond.NEXT: Will Yankees Make Playoffs After Deadline Additions?