Yankees injury update: Aaron Judge making progress in rehab
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New York Yankees’ star outfielder, Aaron Judge, has been actively working towards a return to the field after suffering a right significant toe sprain on June 3. During his ongoing rehab process, Judge has already taken a significant step by standing in the batter’s box against live pitching. Last Monday, he faced the Yankees’ rehabbing pitcher, Nestor Cortes, in Anaheim. However, Judge chose not to swing the bat during that session, as he wanted to focus on tracking pitches and getting a feel for live game situations.
But this Sunday, Judge is ready to take another significant stride forward in his recovery journey. He is set to go up against another rehabbing pitcher, Jonathan Loaisiga. Unlike the last session, the plan is for Judge to take some swings this time.
Aaron Boone excited as Judge prepares for “full-go” session
Yankees manager, Aaron Boone, expressed his excitement for this upcoming session, calling it “full-go.” Judge has been gradually increasing his baseball activities and intensity over the past couple of weeks, and facing Loaisiga, known for his high-90s fastball with plenty of movement, will present a good challenge for the slugger.
“He’s been hitting a lot, so I don’t expect it to be really eventful other than now starting to turn it on against probably as tough a righty as he’s going to face,” Boone remarked about Loaisiga, highlighting that when he’s healthy and performing at his best, he can throw a high-90s fastball with plenty of movement.
Boone acknowledged that Judge has been hitting a lot lately, and while he doesn’t expect anything groundbreaking during Sunday morning’s session, he believes it will be an important milestone as Judge starts to turn up the intensity against a formidable right-handed pitcher like Loaisiga. The manager hopes that this will be a springboard for Judge to get plenty of live at-bats against various pitchers, which would accelerate his return to the Yankees’ lineup.
As for Judge’s return timeline, nothing has been officially disclosed to the public. Judge himself has emphasized that the last true test for him will be running at full intensity. Although he has been running the bases in the last week, he has yet to push it to the maximum. However, indications suggest that he might test his running soon, bringing him closer to a potential return.
Regarding other players on the Yankees’ injury list, both Nestor Cortes and Jonathan Loaisiga have been making progress in their rehab journeys. Cortes, who has been out since June 5 with a left rotator cuff strain, is slated to start a rehab assignment with Double-A Somerset on Sunday. Boone estimated that Cortes might throw around 40 pitches in his outing.
On the other hand, Loaisiga, who has been sidelined since April 6 with right elbow inflammation, will have his second simulated game next Wednesday, after which he is likely to begin a rehab assignment the following weekend.
Yankees’ injury updates
The Yankees have also been monitoring the progress of outfielder Harrison Bader, who was forced to leave a game in Anaheim due to a rib contusion after getting hit by a pitch. However, Bader is doing well in his recovery, and Boone expects him to return to the lineup soon.
Meanwhile, Billy McKinney made his presence felt with a game-changing three-run homer in Friday night’s victory. He was given the leadoff spot on Saturday and delivered, going 1-for-2 with two walks and two runs.
As the Yankees’ injured players gradually return to the field, the team remains focused on their performance during this crucial phase of the season. Anthony Rizzo recently broke a 0-for-20 slump with a line-drive single, and Gleyber Torres extended his hitting streak to an impressive 12 games.
With Judge’s return still uncertain, the Yankees will continue to rely on their depth and talent to navigate through the season, aiming to secure their spot in the playoffs and make a strong push for the World Series.
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