Victor Gonzalez #47 of the Yankees pitches during the sixth inning...

Victor Gonzalez #47 of the Yankees pitches during the sixth inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday, June 19, 2024 in the Bronx borough of New York City. Credit: Jim McIsaac

After giving up 17 runs and having catcher Jose Trevino pitch the ninth inning on Thursday, the Yankees tried to shore up their weary bullpen.

Immediately after Thursday’s 17-5 loss to Baltimore, they again demoted Ron Marinaccio to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

On Friday, the Yankees designated lefty Victor Gonzalez for assignment, which was a surprise because it means they value scrapheap pickup Tim Hill more than Gonzalez.

The Yankees called up righthanders Yoendrys Gomez and Phil Bickford from Scranton before Friday night’s series opener with Atlanta.

Of the bullpen moves in general, Aaron Boone said: “A big thing was the numbers game. Obviously, leaned on the pen heavily the last two days, so needed some coverage down there.”

Boone pointed out that Gomez, who has been pitching as a starter, can give the bullpen some much-needed length, as can Bickford. But there was more to it.

“We definitely needed that [length], and talked about certain things to shake up and pay attention to,” Boone said.

In the cases of Gonzalez and Marinaccio, not throwing enough strikes seems to have been the thing that needed to have attention paid to it.

The decision to let go of Gonzalez in favor of the well-traveled Hill is an interesting one. The Yankees acquired Gonzalez from the Dodgers on Dec. 11 along with minor-league infielder Jorbit Vivas for former first-round pick Trey Sweeney.

Gonzalez was 2-1 with a 3.86 ERA and two saves in 27 appearances. He struggled with control — 13 walks and three hit batters in 23 1⁄3 innings — but also was tough to hit, with a .160 batting average against.

“That was tough because, man, I’ve really enjoyed Vic,” Boone said. “I respect him. He’s had some success in the league. It was hard getting him into a good roll here. Definitely had some struggles with the strike-throwing and not putting guys away a little bit. Just felt like this was something over the long haul that we’re probably going to have to address.”

Boone again called the decision to demote Marinaccio for the second time this season a tough one. But the Yankees keep doing it — seven times in the last three seasons.

Marinaccio goes down with a 2.84 ERA and 19 strikeouts in 19 innings. He also has walked nine and hit three batters and has yet to fulfill the promise the Yankees see in him, based on his excellent stuff. Opposing batters are hitting .188 against the 28-year-old righthander, but he allowed four runs in 6 1⁄3 innings after his most recent call-up.

Boone said Marinaccio handled the news “like a pro. But he’s not thrilled about it, obviously.”

Hill, 34, was signed by the Yankees on Thursday and gave up a three-run home run by Baltimore’s Anthony Santander in his debut. The Yankees added Hill after he pitched to a 5.87 ERA in 27 games with the White Sox.

Perhaps in Bickford, the Yankees are hoping they can unearth another Michael Tonkin situation.

Bickford, like Tonkin, was let go by the Mets in 2024 (Tonkin twice during the season, Bickford at the end of spring training).

Tonkin has flourished with the Yankees, with a 1.08 ERA in 18 appearances going into Friday. Bickford, 28, was 2-2 with a 2.93 ERA for Scranton.

Gomez, 24, entered Friday with two career major-league appearances under his belt. He threw two scoreless innings on Sept. 28, 2003, at Toronto and one perfect inning with three strikeouts May 24 at San Diego. He relieved Carlos Rodon with two outs in the fourth and Atlanta leading 8-1 on Friday night. (At that point, the Yankees had allowed at least one run in nine straight innings and 13 of 14.)

Gomez wound up pitching 4 2/3 scoreless innings against Atlanta, allowing three hits and three walks and striking out five.

“The couple opportunities he has gotten up here, he’s done a nice job,” Boone said. “He’s got a lot of talent. He’s still very raw and has had some injuries in his young career.”

Torres day-to-day after MRI. Gleyber Torres, who left Thursday’s game with right groin tightness, is day-to-day after having an MRI on Friday. Oswaldo Cabrera started at second . . . Alex Verdugo, who Boone said was “a little banged up after running into the wall the other night,” was given the night off against Atlanta lefthander Chris Sale. Jahmai Jones made his fourth start of the season and was slotted fifth in the batting order.

More Yankees headlines

ONE-DAY SALE26¢ for 5 6 months

ACT NOWSALE ENDS SOON | CANCEL ANYTIME