Yankees reliever Adam Warren couldn’t have timed going through a rough patch worse. So good for so long — he allowed one earned run in 19 innings in his first 11 games — the righthander hit a stretch of inconsistency just as closer Aroldis Chapman went on the disabled list and the club needed him most.
But with two excellent appearances in as many days, he might have gotten his groove back.
Warren got the final four outs in a 9-5 win over the A’s at the Stadium on Sunday to earn a save and give interim closer Dellin Betances a break the day after he got five outs to close a win.
Warren faced four batters and retired them all. He got the final out in the eighth to protect a two-run lead and, after the Yankees pushed across two runs in the bottom of the frame, he returned and retired three batters on nine pitches. This came a day after retiring the last two batters in the seventh inning with a runner in scoring position in Saturday’s 3-2 win.
“The save is nice,” he said. “It’s a little bit of a different kind of save when you’re up four, but for me, going back out there for the ninth was about keeping Dellin out of the game after he had to get five outs yesterday.”
In a five-appearance stretch beginning May 14 after Chapman went on the disabled list with rotator cuff inflammation in his left shoulder, Warren gave up eight runs (seven earned) in 5 1⁄3 innings.
“There are going to be highs and lows. I have tried to stay confident,” he said. “The last two have been a boost for me, to make me more confident. I feel a lot better about what I am doing out there, much more in control.”
He said the rough patch got him to examine the release point on his slider and his pitch selection during at-bats. “It’s made all the difference,” he said.
“He had a couple hiccups — the greatest relievers have hiccups,” manager Joe Girardi said. “He’s been really consistent for us and really important for our bullpen. I knew he’d turn it back around.”