NEW YORK – The Yankees’ injury-riddled season just keeps a’rolling.
By placing infielder Gio Urshela on the injured list Friday with a left groin strain, the Yankees have now placed a record 29 players on the injured list this season.
The Dodgers had previously set the record in 2016.
“One of the storylines has been losing guys and getting guys back. It’s something we’ve dealt with,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said Friday before facing the A’s. “The guys have done a great job in handling it to a man. Those guys have really contributed in large ways across the board. We’re probably a little too used to it, but it’s something everyone doesn’t flinch at and goes out and gets it done.”
Injuries have become part of the narrative of this Yankees season with the AL wins leader managing to keep rolling along despite losing players seemingly every other day. It’s a testament to the Yankees’ depth that they entered Friday with an MLB-best 88-47 record despite losing top players such as outfielder Aaron Judge, catcher Gary Sanchez and outfielder Giancarlo Stanton for extended stretches.
The Yankees actually welcomed first baseman Luke Voit from the injured list Friday for the series opener against Oakland, but losing Urshela is a tough blow.
Urshela is hitting .331, but this injury will likely cost him his chance at registering enough at-bats to qualify for the batting title.
Teammate DJ LeMahieu leads MLB with a .335 average.
The Yankees are hoping to have Urshela back next Sunday against Boston, and Boone and Urshela both indicated it’s best to be cautious.
“It’s getting better,” Urshela said. “I’d rather miss a couple days [than more].”
Even though Friday’s transactions set the new record, the Yankees are primed to receive some good news on in the injury front in the upcoming weeks.
Luis Severino (right rotator cuff inflammation) will make his first rehab start Sunday with Double-A Trenton, and reliever Dellin Betances (right shoulder impingement) will face hitters again Saturday. Both can be helpful in the postseason.
Stanton (right knee sprain) participated in batting practice Friday, and Boone is optimistic the former NL MVP can still help his team in September and beyond.
“It’s realistic. We’ll just see. I don’t want to put any expectation on it at this point. The bottom line is he’s dealt with a couple significant injuries this year that have obviously interrupted his season at the beginning, and when he came back [in June], both times we felt he was in a really good place,” Boone said of Stanton. “There’s reason to believe it’s possible he can get back to that point.”
Outfielder Aaron Hicks (right flexor strain) is cleared to resume throwing, and should also begin his hitting progression soon.
“I’m pretty confident I’ll be back, for sure,” Hicks said.
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