The Yankees activated Ben Heller from the IL for the first time since 2017 after recovering from Tommy John surgery that kept him out for almost two full seasons.
Originally acquired in the 2016 Andrew Miller trade, Heller has had some success in small samples at the MLB-level. In 11.0 MLB innings before the injury in 2017, Heller had a 0.82 ERA and opponents hit a measly .135 off of him. It was easy to see why the Yankees loved the hard-throwing righty.
Two years later, the 28-year-old is one of two pieces remaining in the organization that remains from that Andrew Miller trade following last offseason’s trade of Justus Sheffield and last week’s trade of JP Feyereisen. Just Heller and Clint Frazier remain.
Heller has been lights-out in his rehab assignment. He has totaled 13.2 IP and allowed just one run (0.66 ERA) and struck out 15 batters between High-A and Triple-A, not including postseason performances. In the 17-2 loss that ended Scranton/Wilkes-Barre’s season, Heller threw two scoreless innings.
It sure would be a neat story if Heller could dominate down the stretch and make the postseason roster. I don’t see a way in which he has time to prove himself worthy of that but you never know.
The Yankees officially placed Mike Tauchman on the 10-day IL and designated RHP Adonis Rosa for assignment in corresponding moves today. The Tauchman part isn’t super relevant, other than that they didn’t move him directly to the 60-day IL and officially end his season, but they had to cut Rosa to open up a 40-man spot. C’est la vie.