Luis Severino and Dellin Betances finally cleared to throw again


Luis Severino and Dellin Betances are finally ready to begin throwing programs following extensive shutdowns due to strained lats that came after shoulder injuries, but Aaron Boone isn’t ready to place a timeline on when either might be ready to make their season debuts.

Both right-handers underwent MRI exams and were cleared, which is why they are slated to throw on Monday, and the Yankees hope the comebacks for Severino and Betances go more smoothly than earlier in the year, when they suffered lat injuries while rehabbing from shoulder issues.

“I think we’re confident with where they’re at as far as their recovery,’’ Boone said Sunday before the Yankees faced the Blue Jays in The Bronx. “We feel they’re in position to be ready to start this step. Their feedback and how they feel and bounce back is always a major part of the evaluation and how they lay out the program. … They’re ready to graduate to this point.”

That was the case with the key members of the pitching staff as well when they went down initially, which caused general manager Brian Cashman to say the organization would reevaluate their rehab protocols to try to prevent similar setbacks.

There’s still no telling when Betances or Severino will rejoin the roster- or what Severino’s role might be whenever he does return.

Cashman said on SiriusXM’s MLB Network Radio on Friday that Severino could be limited in terms of his pitch count or be used out of the bullpen if he doesn’t have time to throw enough to be a full-time starter for the stretch run, since he’ll need at least a six-week spring training-like period before he returns.

Boone wasn’t prepared to speculate much about how Severino would be used.

“I think we’re way too early in the process,’’ Boone said on Sunday. “I’m sure that’s possible. I think there are a number of things potentially on the table, based on how he progresses, what he gets to and then we’ll see where we’re at as he builds himself up.’’

At this point, Boone is pleased to get positive news on the two pitchers who were supposed to be vital members of their rotation and bullpen, but instead have been out since spring training, with Severino being looked at as a potential key addition to a starting unit that is still in search of an ace.

“I’m just really interested and excited about [Severino] starting a throwing program and seeing where that progresses,’’ Boone said. “How is he responding? How is he bouncing back? I haven’t begun to put a timeline on what it’s gonna take to have him built up to be a starter for us or any kind of option for us.’’

That process will include long-tossing, throwing off flat ground and then advancing to pitching off a mound.

Boone believed they would spend the “bulk” of their early rehab with the Yankees before moving to Tampa depending on where they are in the process.

“Hopefully this is the start of their way back,” Boone said.