NEW YORK (AP)Scott Effross didn’t feel right the day after a Sept. 30 outing against Baltimore.

”It was just like mild soreness. I thought just kind of end-of-the-year, normal soreness,” the New York Yankees rookie reliever recalled.

He rebounded to pitch at Texas three days later, then mentioned the issue to the team following a batting practice session at Yankee Stadium on Friday.

A day later, he went for an MRI and received devastating news: He needs Tommy John surgery to repair a torn ligament in his right elbow, an injury that will cause him to miss the playoffs and likely the entire 2023 season.

”Obviously you know when you go in there there’s the possibility of finding something you don’t want to see,” he said before Tuesday’s AL Division Series opener against Cleveland. ”For me, I think it was kind of shocking.”

Effross was acquired by the Yankees from the Chicago Cubs on Aug. 1 for minor league right-hander Hayden Wesneski. Effross has not decided which surgeon will operate or when to have the operation, which usually requires a recovery time of 12 to 18 months.

Viewed as a possible closer because of injuries to and struggles of Aroldis Chapman, Clay Holmes and Chad Green, Effross made eight appearances for New York and then was sidelined by a strained right shoulder between Aug. 20 and Sept. 24. He returned to make five more appearances and allowed two hits and no runs in 4 1/3 innings, the last a one-inning, 10-pitch outing at Texas on Oct. 3.

”It’s a huge loss. Feel terrible for him,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. ”He’s kind of heartbroken over it.”

A 28-year-old right-hander, Effross had a 2.13 ERA over 12 2/3 innings and 13 games with New York, striking out 12 and walking four. He was 1-4 with a 2.66 ERA overall with four saves in 60 games this season for the Cubs and Yankees.

Effross made his major league debut on Aug. 29 last year. He is eligible for arbitration after the 2024 season.

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