New York Yankees’ star Aaron Judge is set to go on the injured list for the second time this season, after hurting his right toe during a spectacular catch at the Dodger Stadium. The reigning American League Most Valuable Player (MVP) missed his second consecutive game on Tuesday night, and underwent testing that showed a bruise and a sprained ligament. Yankees’ Manager Aaron Boone confirmed that Judge received a platelet-rich plasma injection and will go on the injured list, but did not give a timeline for his return.
Boone said that the priority now is to attempt to reduce the swelling in Judge’s toe. “Had some improvements today, but now just see where we are in the coming weeks, or days and then a week,” Boone said. The manager confirmed that the player’s toe is not fractured, adding, “I think it definitely could have been worse. Hopefully it’s on the shorter side of things.”
Judge banged his right toe during the eighth inning of Saturday’s 6-3 win over the Dodgers, after making a running catch and crashing into the outfield fence. He sat out Sunday’s 4-1 victory, and this will be the eighth time that the 31-year-old will be out of action since making his Major League debut on Aug. 13, 2016. Judge missed 10 games this season with a strained right hip after getting injured on a headfirst slide attempting to steal third during the April 26 game against the Minnesota Twins.
Without Judge in the lineup, the Yankees went 4-6 on the injured list. Since his return from the hip injury, the right fielder was batting .326 with 13 of his AL-best 19 homers. New York is 30-19 with Judge in the lineup, averaging five runs per game. Compared to that, the Yankees are 6-7 without him, averaging 3.5 runs.
After staying with the Yankees last offseason, Judge was appointed as the team captain and signed a $360 million, nine-year contract as a free agent. Yankees’ Third Baseman, Josh Donaldson, commented on Judge’s absence, “You can’t replace that guy, from a leadership standpoint, from a playing standpoint. We’re just really going to have to come together as a team and grind out at-bats, play good defense, throw the ball well, and hopefully keep winning ballgames until he’s back.”
The Yankees have also confirmed that they will place left-hander Nestor Cortes on the injured list with a shoulder strain. Rookie right-hander Randy Vásquez will pitch in his place on Wednesday. Reliever Ryan Weber has also been sidelined with a strained ulnar collateral ligament in his pitching elbow and is deciding whether to get surgery. He is 1-0 with a 3.14 ERA in eight appearances this year.