Anthony Rizzo avoids surgery, but Yankees to be without star for over a month

Yankees' Anthony Rizzo sidelined for at least 4-6 weeks with a fracture.
ESPN
Esteban Quiñones
Tuesday June 18, 2024

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In an unfortunate turn of events for the New York Yankees, first baseman Anthony Rizzo will be sidelined due to an injury sustained in a recent game. While the Yankees breathe a sigh of relief as Rizzo avoids the need for surgery, they face the challenging prospect of filling a significant gap in their lineup. This injury not only disrupts Rizzo’s season but also comes at a time when he was beginning to show signs of returning to form.

Anthony Rizzo’s injury update: A tough break amidst a tiny glimpse of form

During a tense game against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park, Anthony Rizzo experienced a painful collision at first base with Red Sox reliever Brennan Berardino. The collision, which occurred as Rizzo attempted to beat a ground ball, led to him suffering a fracture to the radial neck of his right arm. Despite initial hopes post-game, further examinations confirmed the severity of the injury, requiring him to miss an estimated four to six weeks of play.

Prior to the injury, Rizzo’s season had been a mix of struggles and hopeful rebounds. With a batting average of just .223 and a modest .630 OPS through 70 games, his performance had been underwhelming compared to previous seasons. The Yankees had even benched Rizzo for two consecutive games to allow him to work on his swing. This appeared to yield some results, as he returned with some crucial hits, including a home run against Kansas City. Unfortunately, just as he seemed to be regaining his form, this injury has put a temporary halt to his resurgence.

In Rizzo’s absence, the Yankees are expected to make strategic adjustments to their infield. DJ LeMahieu is likely to shift from third base to first base, while utility player Oswaldo Cabrera will cover third base.

Anthony Rizzo’s recent injury is not his first brush with bad luck following an on-field collision. Last season, a significant downturn in his performance followed a May 28, 2023, incident involving a pickoff play with Fernando Tatís Jr. of the San Diego Padres. During the play, Tatís inadvertently knocked Rizzo down, resulting in a neck injury that markedly affected his season.

Before this collision, Rizzo was performing strongly, boasting a .304 average with 11 homers. However, post-collision, his numbers plummeted to a .172 batting average with just a single home run over the next 46 games. His struggles culminated in an August placement on the injured list for post-concussion syndrome, believed to be related to the same incident. Ultimately, the lingering effects led to the Yankees shutting Rizzo down for the remainder of the 2023 season on September 5, as announced by manager Aaron Boone. This pattern of misfortune has seemingly followed him into the current season, underscoring a challenging phase in his career marked by sporadic injuries and inconsistent performance.

Anthony Rizzo's collision occurred in the seventh inning of the Yankees' game against the Red Sox on Sunday. 4 Anthony Rizzo’s collision occurred in the seventh inning of the Yankees’ game against the Red Sox on Sunday, June 16, 2024.
USA TODAY

Another setback for the Yankees: Jasson Dominguez

Compounding the challenges for the Yankees, Jasson Dominguez, a highly touted prospect, has also been placed on the injured list with a left side injury suffered during an awkward swing in a Triple-A game. Dominguez, known as “The Martian” for his impressive skills, had only recently returned to play following surgery on his right elbow. Despite a promising start at Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, where he posted a .389 batting average in nine games, this new injury raises concerns about his durability.

Yankees' Jasson Dominguez
Baseball america

The timing of these injuries presents a conundrum for the Yankees as they approach the trade deadline. Lucky for the Yankees, there outfield has been far from any problems this season, so Dominguez can take all the time he needs to recover. However, their infield is living on life support anyway – supplied by shortstop Anthony Volpe. It is very likely that the are aggressive buyers at the deadline, and make some serious moves to counter these latest injuries. What do you think? Leave your comment below!

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One thought on “Anthony Rizzo avoids surgery, but Yankees to be without star for over a month

  1. I think the infield will be okay with Rizzo out, but some backup players will be needed before the trade deadline.

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