Domingo German Yankees

Battle for Final Bullpen Spot Ends as German Optioned

Chris Lewis
Chris Lewis

 

photo credit:Steve Mitchell USA TODAY Sports

It appears Jonathan Holder has won the final bullpen spot over Domingo German. Both pitchers had solid springs, but Holder’s was just a bit better.

Holder has posted a 1.09 WHIP along with an ERA of 1.80 so far this spring. Domingo German’s numbers are just a shade higher: 1.10 WHIP and an ERA of 2.30.

Holder was a starter in his first two minor league seasons but was transitioned to the bullpen in 2016. He excelled in that role, making 42 appearances at three different minor league levels. In 65.1 total innings pitched in 2016, Holder went 5-1 with an ERA of 1.65, to go along with 101 strikeouts and a mere seven walks.

Walks were the primary difference between Holder and German this spring. Holder didn’t walk a single batter in 10 spring innings while striking out 11 batters. German has 6 walks in 15.2 innings.

The decision to send German to AAA makes the most sense for both players, as well as for the Yankees. In Scranton Wilkes-Barre, German will be stretched out as a starting pitcher, giving the Yankees some insurance in case of an injury.

Holder seems well-suited to a bullpen role, where he spent most of 2017. Last season, Holder posted a 3.89ERA in 39.1 innings and earned two saves.