The New York Yankees experienced a 2019 season that was plagued by tons of injuries to key players, and the 2020 season is already ringing in a similar narrative. The Yankees are going to start the season without James Paxton, who had surgery to remove a cyst. The timeline for his return is said to be three to four months, keeping him out until June or July, assuming the timeline remains the same. It was announced by the Yankees earlier that the surgery was completed to remove a peridiscal cyst in his back.
Earlier today, LHP James Paxton underwent a microscopic lumbar discectomy with removal of a peridiscal cyst. The surgery was performed by Dr. Andrew Dossett in Dallas, Texas. His approximate timeline to return to Major League action is 3-4 months.
— Yankees PR Dept. (@YankeesPR) February 5, 2020
In 2019, Paxton took the mound twenty-nine times, pitching himself to a 15-6 record. Over 150.2 innings pitched on the 2019 season, Paxton had a 3.82 ERA, with a 1.28 WHIP, while fanning 186 hitters. 2019 was Paxton’s first season with the Yankees after spending the prior six seasons with the Seattle Mariners before being traded to the Yankees in a deal that sent prospect Justus Sheffield to the Mariners.
With the signing of dominant ace Gerrit Cole and now the loss of Paxton, hanging onto JA Happ looks a lot better for the Yankees organization. Going into Spring Training, the Yankees rotation should have Cole as the ace, Masahiro Tanaka second, Luis Severino third, JA Happ fourth, and now Jordan Montgomery as the fifth starter. Keep in mind the Yankees are also without Domingo German, who is serving his suspension for the domestic violence issue that came about during last season.