ATLANTA — The way Luis Severino sees it, he has nothing to lose Tuesday night.
He’s in the worst stretch of his career, facing the premier lineup in the sport.
Outward expectations are low.
“Only good things can happen,” the right-hander told The Post before the Yankees opened a three-game series with the NL East-leading Braves at Truist Park on Monday night. “I’ve been really bad this year and they’ve been really good. So only good things can happen, pretty much. They have a very tough lineup. I have to go with my game plan and whatever happens, happens.”
It has so far been a lost season for Severino, a nightmarish year in which nothing has gone right.
He will start on Tuesday, manager Aaron Boone said, against the team that leads MLB in runs scored and features one home run threat after another.
The Yankees used an opener for his last start, but it didn’t solve any of the 29-year-old Severino’s much-documented problems.
“It was just very weird, not used to it,” Severino said. “They were trying to find ways to get me better, get me going.”
Nothing has worked so far.
Severino will enter his next outing sporting a jarring 8.06 ERA and 1.88 WHIP.
The Yankees have lost nine of his last 12 appearances and he has allowed an astounding 18 earned runs over his last 9 ¹/₃ innings pitched while walking six and allowing 20 hits.
The Yankees really don’t have any other direction to go, now that Nestor Cortes is likely out for the season with a rotator cuff strain, Domingo German won’t be back this year after the team placed him on the restricted list due to alcohol abuse and Carlos Rodon (hamstring strain) is currently on the injured list.
“I’ve been working on everything right now. There’s not just one thing. Important for me, I need to attack the zone, throw strikes,” Severino said. “My goal for [Tuesday] is don’t walk anybody. Make pitches, we’ll see what happens. That’s been the biggest difference this year. I’ve been walking too many guys.”
As he looks to find a way out of his season-long slump, Severino has heard from a lot of people, from friends to teammates to recently hired adviser Andy Pettitte.
The biggest takeaway he has gotten from all the advice he has received is to look ahead, not back. There’s nothing he can do about this difficult year up to this point.
“Forget about everything, the numbers are in the past. Just worry about what’s in front of me,” Severino said. “Of course they’re good hitters. But I can make good pitches and try to be ahead in the count, we’ll see what happens.
“The good thing is right now that I’m healthy, and if I’m healthy, I can continue to compete. That’s the only way I can get better.”
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