Boone on Gerrit Cole’s return: ‘I wouldn’t even want to guess on that’

Yankees ace Gerrit Cole is making a throw from a distance of 120 feet at Yankee Stadium on April 24, 2024.
John Allen
Thursday May 2, 2024

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The New York Yankees have been providing encouraging updates on Gerrit Cole’s rehabilitation program, signaling positive developments. However, the team remains prudent and cautious regarding his highly anticipated return to the starting rotation.

“I wouldn’t even want to guess on that,” Boone told in Baltimore. “He and the trainers and everyone are working through that. So we’ll see.”

Gerrit Cole, the reigning American League Cy Young Award winner, has been sidelined since the mid-point of spring training due to inflammation and swelling in his elbow nerve. While the Yankees have refrained from establishing a definitive timeline for his comeback, it is evident that throwing off a mound has not yet been incorporated into his rehabilitation regimen.

There is a possibility that Gerrit Cole could commence throwing off a mound during the Yankees’ upcoming homestand, following their current road trip. Nonetheless, substantial progress remains necessary before the ace can realistically rejoin the rotation and take the mound in a game situation.

Gerrit cole, player of the yankees

Although Gerrit Cole becomes eligible to be activated from the 60-day injured list on May 27th, it is apparent that several additional weeks of preparation will be required before he can realistically be considered game-ready.

During a pre-game press conference before Wednesday night’s victory over the Baltimore Orioles, Yankees manager Aaron Boone exercised caution when addressing queries regarding Gerrit Cole’s potential return date. Boone emphasized that the Yankees ace, in collaboration with the medical staff and other relevant personnel, is diligently working toward his recovery. However, the manager refused to make any definitive pronouncements, stressing that decisions would be contingent upon Gerrit Cole’s continued progress and advancements in his rehabilitation.

No date fixed on Gerrit Cole’s rehab, return

Yankees ace Gerrit Cole talks to young fans at Yankee Museum, New York, on April 26, 2024.

The New York Yankees have remained guarded in providing a specific timeline for the return of ace pitcher Gerrit Cole from an elbow injury. Nevertheless, early indications suggest that his rehabilitation process is unfolding smoothly.

Following the diagnosis of Gerrit Cole’s elbow nerve inflammation and edema, the Yankees initially projected a recovery period akin to a full spring training cycle – approximately six weeks. This estimation took into account Gerrit Cole’s limited preparatory work, as he had only made a solitary Grapefruit League start before succumbing to the injury.

Ordinarily, pitchers arrive at spring training having already engaged in bullpen sessions or faced live batters. Since Gerrit Cole lacked this pre-season conditioning, there is uncertainty regarding the precise commencement of his six-week rehabilitation period.

Currently, Gerrit Cole is dedicatedly working on his recovery in New York. He has progressed to throwing flat-ground sessions at the maximum distance of 120 feet, a common milestone for pitchers during the rehabilitation process. In recent days, he has also been gradually intensifying the intensity of these throwing sessions.

However, Boone remained tight-lipped regarding the next phase of Cole’s rehab – transitioning to throwing off a mound. While Boone hinted that this crucial step could occur soon, he refrained from offering a concrete timeline.

Yankees prioritize Cole’s health as rotation shines

The New York Yankees are focused on ensuring that ace Gerrit Cole fully recovers from his elbow injury, opting for a cautious approach to his return. Despite Cole’s absence, the team’s starting rotation has delivered impressive performances, contributing to their success.

As of Wednesday, the collective efforts of Nestor Cortes, Carlos Rodon, Marcus Stroman, Clarke Schmidt, Luis Gil, and Cody Poteet have resulted in a commendable 3.38 ERA, ranking fifth-lowest in Major League Baseball. Additionally, they have held opposing teams to three earned runs or fewer in an impressive 25 out of 31 starts.

Manager Aaron Boone attributes much of the team’s success, evidenced by their 19-12 record, to the pitching staff’s consistency and competitive spirit. He emphasizes their role in keeping the team competitive, even during less-than-perfect performances, setting a high standard for the entire roster.

Despite the potential for Gerrit Cole’s earlier return, the Yankees are wary of repeating past mistakes. Rushing injured players back has often led to setbacks, and they are determined to avoid this with their star pitcher.

Nestor Cortes acknowledges the initial challenge of navigating the season without Gerrit Cole but praises the team’s resilience and collective effort. He expresses confidence in the team’s ability to maintain their strong performance until the ace’s return, with the entire pitching staff committed to holding the fort in the interim.

What do you think? Leave your comment below.

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