Quick Hit: A-Rod To The DL With A Hammy Strain

Well this isn't going to help the offense break out anytime soon.  The Yankees announced earlier that they are placing Alex Rodriguez on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right hamstring.  The team also announced that they called up lefty reliever James Pazos to take A-Rod's spot on the roster.  This is a double blow for A-Rod and the Yankees because he had been coming around with the bat after a painfully slow start.  Coming into last night's game, Alex had hit 3 home runs, 3 doubles, and driven in 7 runs in his previous 5 games.  Without his hot bat in the middle of the lineup, the near lifeless offense will have a major void to fill. As for Pazos, I highly doubt he'll be in contention to pick up A-Rod's lost DH at-bats.  The decision to call him up rather than a position player indicates the Yankees are going to give more regular playing time to Aaron Hicks and Dustin Ackley and rotate guys through the DH spot as needed.  Honestly, that's probably a better plan than calling up Swisher or Refsnyder, and it's not like the Yankee 'pen has been as stellar lately as they were in the early weeks of the season.

Worst of all, the Yankees become a lot more boring with A-Rod out of action.  He remained one of the few reasons to tune in and watch this team and now they really need a spark to pull them out of this extended malaise.  Here's hoping guys like Teix and Beltran and Gardner can step up and lead a rally while A-Rod recovers.

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Tuesday Morning News And Notes: 4/26/16

There were a lot of little stories coming out yesterday, zero of which we touched on here.  Let's catch up on them in a little rapid fire notes blog. - A-Rod's MRI on his oblique came back negative, so the Yankees elected to not make a roster move for either him or Aaron Hicks.  They played last night with a 23-man roster.  I'm actually a little surprised they haven't just put Hicks on the DL retroactive to the date he got hurt and called somebody up, but it sounds like A-Rod might be available again soon.  He did take BP yesterday.

- I don't remember where I saw it, but apparently Hicks played catch yesterday before the game.  He hadn't been doing much of anything before then, so I guess the advancement to "baseball activities" is a good thing.

- Branden Pinder has decided to have Tommy John Surgery to repair his UCL tear.  He'll be out for the next 12-14 months, which is a major bummer for him and the SWB Shuttle.

- With Pinder and Rumbelow out and Jacob Lindgren going back on the DL with an elbow injury in High-A, the Yankees made a move to bring back lefty reliever Phil Coke.  He had been pitching in the Independent Atlantic League and was mostly bad last year at multiple levels for multiple teams, but he is a former True Yankee and that's something that can't be measured.  Being left-handed is so awesome if you're a baseball player.

- The worst news of the day yesterday might have been the James Kaprielian elbow injury.  He was placed on the DL with "elbow inflammation" and there is no timetable for his return.  The Yankees confirmed that an MRI showed no structural damage in his elbow, so there is no surgery planned for him.  The plan is to treat Kaprielian "conservatively" with rest and throwing, so at the bare minimum we can stop dreaming of him making it to the big leagues this season.

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Quick Hit: Pinder Diagnosed With UCL Tear

Brendan Kuty with the scoop on the latest injury to afflict the Yankee bullpen.  Branden Pinder, who was placed on the 15-day DL yesterday with an elbow strain, has been diagnosed with a UCL tear in his pitching elbow.  Surgery is still up in the air, so this tear might not be as serious as the injury that ended Nick Rumbelow's season, but it's going to keep him out of action for some time.

Pinder was replaced on the active roster by Nick Goody yesterday, and now with he and Rumbelow on the shelf with Bryan Mitchell, relief depth is starting to become an area of concern for the Yankees.  Luis Cessa has been sent back down to Triple-A to work as a starter, Aroldis Chapman is still weeks away from returning, and Johnny Barbato recently experienced his first rough outing.  The SWB Shuttle is short a few bodies and possibly looking for new passengers.

It doesn't sound promising for Pinder, but hopefully this is a minor tear and something he can return from with the Tanaka rest-and-rehab method.

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Quick Hit: McCann's Toe Injury

If you watched last night's game, you were probably a little uneasy seeing Brian McCann limp around the bases for his game-tying home run and move gingerly in general after taking a foul ball off his left foot in the middle of the game.  It was serious enough for him to get checked out by trainers on the field at one point, but not serious enough for him to come out of the game until the 9th inning. The early concern was that his left big toe could be broken and there were plans to have McCann X-rayed after he came out.  Instead he had some blood drained from the toe and a fluoroscope taken at Rogers Centre.  That doesn't sound like an actual medical procedure to me, but I'm not a doctor and it showed no break, so for now the team is calling it a bruised left toe and waiting to see how McCann feels today.

Joe announced after last night's game ended that McCann would get tonight off, so bare minimum this is something serious enough to keep him out of action for 1 game and get him tagged with the old "day-to-day" label.  Beyond that we don't know right now, although I imagine we will find out more as today progresses.  It goes without saying that losing McCann for any extended period of time would be a big blow.  He's been the hottest hitter in the lineup since Opening Day.  Hopefully this is something that keeps him out for a day or 2 and doesn't linger as the season goes on.

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Quick Hit: Rumbelow Needs TJS

Didn't get to this last night, but it appears as though we have our first significant arm injury of the year.  As first reported by Chad Jennings, Nick Rumbelow needs Tommy John Surgery in his right elbow and will miss the rest of this season.  The report was picked up by a bunch of other beat guys and later confirmed by GM Brian Cashman. Rumbelow was in the running for an Opening Day bullpen spot earlier in Spring Training.  He pitched to a 4.02/3.84/3.87 tripleslash in 17 big league appearances last year and figured to factor into the SWB shuttle at some point this season, although the Yankees had been experimenting with stretching him out as a starter after he was reassigned to MiL camp.  He made a relief appearance on Sunday and had to leave the game with an injury.  That injury was to his pitching elbow and it will require TJS.  Major bummer for Rumbelow.

Also a major bummer for the Yankees, who have lost another piece of relief depth.  They're already without Bryan Mitchell for at least the next 4 months and Aroldis Chapman for the next 24 games.  Now without Rumbelow they're down to Nick Goody and Branden Pinder as the only righty relievers left on the 40-man roster, along with lefties James Pazos, Jacob Lindgren, and Tyler Olson.

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Mid-Day News And Notes: 3/31/16

Sorry about the lack of updates this morning, gang.  Technical issues.  But we're back up and running now and there's a lot to catch up on.  Here we go in rapid fire succession. - The CT scan on Andrew Miller's right wrist revealed a chip fracture to a small bone.  Miller has already said he doesn't plan to miss time because of this, but he is going to meet with another specialist first.

- The news is not as good for Bryan Mitchell, who basically has a broken big toe in his left foot.  Via Jack Curry, he's expected to be out at least 3 months and he will also meet with a specialist to decide if surgery is necessary or not.  Such a terrible break for Mitchell.  He was looking like the next big piece of the bullpen.  Now another spot is up for grabs.

- The Yankees announced that Ronald Torreyes beat out Pete Kozma for the final bench spot yesterday.  Good for him and good for the decision makers for making the higher-upside decision.  Now let's see how Joe uses him and how often.

- The Yankees also triggered Carlos Corporan's opt-out clause yesterday by emailing the rest of MLB and letting them know that he was available, so Austin Romine is going to be the backup catcher on Opening Day.

- Haven't seen it officially announced by the team yet, but it sounds like Johnny Barbato is getting one of the open bullpen spots.  The team did just announce that he was the winner of this year's James P. Dawson Award as the best rookie in camp.

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UPDATING: Andrew Miller Suffers Bruised Right Wrist After Taking Liner In Today's Game

Well that's not good.

After dodging a bullet on Jacoby Ellsbury's recent HBP on the wrist, the Yankees will have to hold their breath again on this one.  Andrew Miller, in this afternoon's game in relief of Ivan Nova, took a line drive off his right wrist and immediately left the field.  Jared Diamond's description of what happened doesn't make it sound good, and the Yankees can ill afford to lose another one of their big 3 late-game relievers now that they're already without Aroldis Chapman for the first 30 games.  The only silver lining here is that at least it wasn't his left wrist.

More on this story as it develops...

** UPDATE 2:35 PM **- Via Wally Matthews, Cash called the injury a "bruised right wrist" for now and said Miller has been sent back to Tampa for X-rays and a CT scan.

** UPDATE 2:47 PM **- Not that this situation needs to get any worse, but apparently Bryan Mitchell also hurt himself in this game.  According to Bryan Hoch it's a sprained left big toe and he'll have an MRI on it tonight.

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Quick Hit: Ellsbury Out Until At Least Thursday

By now we've all caught our breath from the Jacoby Ellsbury injury scare.  X-rays all came back negative and there's nothing broken in his wrist or hand that got plunked on Saturday, so he's not going to be out for an extended period of time.  In fact, he might not even be out for that long at all based on yesterday's reports. According to Mark Feinsand, Joe told reporters that Ellsbury was still really sore yesterday and there was still some inflammation in his wrist where he got hit.  The team wants to wait for the inflammation to go down before getting him back into games - which is obviously the right decision - and the tentative plan is for Ellsbury to be out for the next few days and return to game action on Thursday.  The team has an off-day today before hosting the Mets tomorrow, and then they play 3 of their next 4 games on the road heading into this weekend.  Thursday is the lone home game in that 4-game stretch, and with Ellsbury presumably spending the next few days getting treatment and testing the wrist at the team facility, it makes sense to bring him back at home where he can be closely monitored.

This is obviously a dodged bullet for Ellsbury and the Yankees.  Regardless of how you feel about him, the team is better and deeper when he's healthy and producing at the top of the lineup.  But he's not completely out of the woods yet.  Team doctors need to see how the soreness and swelling go down before following through on that plan to get him back in action on Thursday, and if they or Ellsbury decide that the wrist still isn't up to it then the plan should be pushed back.  While I continue to hold onto my belief that it's unfair to label Ellsbury "injury prone", I do think it's fair to point out that he's had a history of injuries lingering after he comes back from them.  With this one taking place 2+ weeks before the start of the regular season, there's no need to risk that and rush him back.

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Injury News And Notes: 3/14/16

The Yankees are off today after a sloppy game yesterday.  Guess daylight savings really got to them.  They're still dealing with a few minor injuries as they approach the halfway point of spring camp.  Here's the latest on those injuries: - Via Bryan Hoch, Brett Gardner participated in a simulated game yesterday morning, getting 9 at-bats and completing them without any physical issues.  The plan is for him to play in his first ST game either Tuesday or Wednesday and I imagine we'll get an update on exactly when he will make his debut soon.

- Also via Hoch, the Yankees scratched Dustin Ackley from the road trip lineup on Saturday morning because of a tight quad.  I haven't seen much follow-up on this, so I don't think it's a big deal.  Could just be the team being cautious like they were with Eovaldi's groin.

- Brian McCann took a ball off the kneecap in yesterday's game and was removed early.  Via Jack Curry, that was due to the knee stiffening up and the team wanted to play it safe.  When asked about it during the YES broadcast of the game, Joe said it was no big deal and that McCann would have stayed in if it was a regular season game.  Off-day ice should do him good.

Pete Kozma returned to game action late last week and he played on Thursday, Friday, and Sunday, so he's back to full health.  Donovan Solano still hasn't returned from his back injury.  Kozma better start hitting if he wants a shot at stealing back the utility bench job from Refsnyder.

- Trainers were seen visiting with Luis Severino after his appearance on Saturday and Aroldis Chapman yesterday, but nothing has been reported regarding either of them.  Probably nothing more than usual ST treatment.

The team is mostly healthy right now and that's a good thing.  Gardner returning to the field this week would be a good sign that he'll be ready for Opening Day.

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Early Spring Injury Report: Gardner, Eovaldi, Shreve

The Yankees' 2016 spring opener is less than 2 days away and already there are some injury notes piling up.  Here's the latest: - Brett Gardner did 2 consecutive days of light hitting drills over the weekend and got some light work in today, so the team continues to take it slow with him.  Sounds like he's going to take live batting practice in the cage on Wednesday after the scheduled team off-day tomorrow.

- Nathan Eovaldi felt some "minor tightness" in his left groin during running drills late last week.  The team scrapped his planned live BP session over the weekend, but he's participated in some drills and is scheduled to throw a bullpen on Wednesday.  Sounds like this is nothing more than early spring precautions, but I'm sure the team will have a close eye on him during that bullpen sesh.

- Chasen Shreve took a line drive in the back throwing BP today, the second straight day that has happened after Ivan Nova took one off the leg on Sunday.  Shreve is OK, but that ended his session a little early.  Put a little ice on it and he should be fine.

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