Yankees’ Jonathan Loaisiga, Nestor Cortes back from COVID IL

A depleted Yankees bullpen got two reinforcements Friday by way of the COVID-19 list.

Jonathan Loaisiga and Nestor Cortes, two of the six Yankees to test positive for COVID-19 in their most recent outbreak, were reinstated to the active roster Friday ahead of another matchup with the Red Sox at Fenway Park.

Yankees Jonathan Loaisiga, Nestor Cortes
Jonathan Loaisiga, Nestor Cortes
Corey Sipkin; Bill Kostroun

Loaisiga had been on the COVID-19 list since July 10 while Cortes joined him there on July 15. Both pitchers had been vaccinated, making their positive tests breakthroughs. Wandy Peralta, Aaron Judge, Gio Urshela and Kyle Higashioka remain on the COVID-19 IL.

The returns of Loaisiga and Cortes come at a time when dependable and fresh arms in the bullpen are sorely needed. The Yankees lost Thursday’s series opener against the Red Sox after Lucas Luetge blew a one-run lead in the seventh inning, Chad Green blew a two-run lead in the ninth and Brooks Kriske blew a one-run lead in the 10th.

Kriske was optioned back to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre after the game and Nick Nelson was optioned on Friday to make room for Loaisiga and Cortes.

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