OAKLAND, Calif. — Joe Girardi has never been one to publicly view any glass less than half full, so it wasn’t a surprise he brushed aside the numbers posted by his starters during the still alive and not too well six-game losing streak.
“Our starters will get back on track, and for some of it, it has been one bad inning,” the manager said after fill-in starter Luis Cessa absorbed a 4-3 loss Sunday to the Athletics at the Coliseum. “We’ll get it turned around. I’m not too worried about that.”
With CC Sabathia, who is tied with Michael Pineda for the team lead in wins with seven, on the disabled list, Cessa will make his next start, Girardi said. On Sunday, Cessa started with two scoreless innings and then gave up four runs in the third that erased a 2-0 Yankees lead.
“I started good and made a couple of mistakes and paid the price,” said Cessa, who gave up a two-run homer to Khris Davis in the third.
During the six-game slide, Yankees starters are 0-2 with a 6.98 ERA. That is a long way from the 5-0 ledger and 1.67 ERA the starters posted when the Yankees won six straight from June 7-12.
Most worrisome is Masahiro Tanaka failed to build on a solid outing against the Angels last Monday when he was shelled by the A’s on Saturday.
Sabathia continues to be pleased how the Grade 2 strain of the left hamstring is coming along.
“It’s very encouraging, big time,” said Sabathia who is on the disabled list and so far limited to playing catch on flat ground. “The pain I was dealing with is not as bad.”
According to Sabathia, there is a chance he could be throwing off a mound soon.
“Probably sometime next week,” said Sabathia, who left Tuesday night’s game against the Angels after four innings because of hamstring trouble.
Until Sunday, the Yankees were the only American League team not to have been swept in a series. Then they lost their four straight to the A’s, who opened play Sunday with the worst winning percentage (.441) in the AL.
Gleyber Torres was placed on Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre’s 7-day disabled list Sunday, a day after suffering a hyperextended left elbow sliding into home plate Saturday, and there is no guarantee the Yankees’ top prospect will be ready to return when eligible.
“No one told me, but I would assume with a hyperextended elbow it will be more than a week,’’ general manager Brian Cashman said Sunday.
Torres will be examined Monday by Yankees physician Chris Ahmad.
In 55 combined games for Double-A Trenton and Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, Torres is hitting .287 with seven homers, 34 RBIs and a .863 OPS.
To make room for Aroldis Chapman, the Yankees sent catcher Kyle Higashioka to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Higashioka joined the team Friday after Gary Sanchez was removed from a game Thursday night with an abductor-muscle problem.
Sanchez took batting practice before Sunday’s game and returned to the lineup. Hitting second for the first time since June 6, he went 0-for-4.