O’s-Yanks rainout; Morales acquired, Andujar mulls surgery
NEW YORK (AP) — New York Yankees third baseman Miguel Andujar was expected to make a decision soon on fixing his injured right shoulder, a plan that could involve missing the rest of the season.
In the meantime, Kendrys Morales will be putting on the pinstripes, traded from Oakland to New York for either a player to be named or cash.
There was no game Tuesday night when the Yankees and Baltimore Orioles were rained out for the second straight day.
The teams already were set for a single-admission doubleheader starting at 3:05 p.m. Wednesday, created by Monday night’s rainout. Tuesday’s postponement will be made up as the first game of a day-night, separate-admission twinbill on Aug. 12.
This latest postponement came a day after the 24-year-old Andujar was put on the 10-day injured list with a small labrum tear in his right shoulder, the second time he’s been shelved this season.
Andujar was initially sidelined from April 1 to May 3 with the same injury and has struggled mightily since returning, batting .128 overall (6 for 47) with no extra-base hits and just one RBI.
Runner-up for 2018 AL Rookie of the Year, Andujar had another MRI that revealed no change from his previous tests.
“Basically the MRI was about identical, the small labrum tear still there, hasn’t changed at all,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said Tuesday. “Rest of the shoulder is pretty good. It’s stable, so I think over the next 24 hours he’s going to have those conversations with his family and with us and figure out what the best course of action (is).”
Andujar was one of New York’s most productive hitters last season, hitting .297 with 27 home runs and 92 RBIs in 149 games. Newcomer Gio Urshela has filled in admirably, batting .341 with a .902 OPS in 101 at-bats and playing Gold Glove-level defense at the hot corner.
“Miggy’s a real good player and obviously this year, the struggles, I’m sure a lot of it’s obviously related to the shoulder,” Boone said. “Obviously Gio’s stepped up in a big way for us, but to lose Miguel Andujar and his production would be a blow that we’d have to deal with it.”
Boone wasn’t ready to assume that Andujar would definitely undergo surgery, however.
“Out of respect for Miggy, I just want him to really be able to work through this and talk to his family and people close to him,” Boone said. “Then I just want him to feel good about whatever decision he makes, because he’ll be a big part of that decision obviously.”
Morales was cut by the A’s on Monday after hitting .204 with one homer and seven RBIs in 34 games. The 35-year-old first baseman/designated hitter is owed about $8.9 million of his $12 million contract this season.
The Yankees also announced an update on injured slugger Giancarlo Stanton, on the IL since April 1 with what was originally a strained left biceps. The former NL MVP has moved past the biceps injury but is now dealing with what the Yankees are calling a left shoulder strain.
“It’s been something that’s been a minor nagging thing with him,” Boone said after the diagnosis was announced.
Stanton has been participating in baseball activities, but there is no timetable for his return.
“I think he had like nine at-bats yesterday and more of the same today, doing his defensive work and running so I feel like hopefully he’s moving to really start to get some at-bats and start thinking about getting back,” Boone noted.
There’s been a lot of wait-and-see for Orioles and Yankees in recent days.
On Sunday, the start of the game between the Orioles and Angels at Camden Yards was delayed almost three hours because of rain. The same day, New York’s game at Tampa Bay was stopped for 43 minutes in the ninth inning due to a power outage at Tropicana Field.
The weather forecast is calling for clear skies Wednesday.
“Obviously you don’t want to rack up doubleheaders and things like that, and as dicey as the weather’s been here the first month and a half of the season, we’ve been pretty fortunate that we’ve gotten some games in,” Boone said.
“Anytime in the course of the grind of the season that you get a day here, you welcome it and try and make the most of it and try and appreciate that the guys get some downtime,” he said.
Orioles: RHP Zach Pop underwent successful surgery to repair the UCL ligament in his right elbow. The hard-throwing prospect was acquired from the Dodgers as part of last July’s trade that sent superstar Manny Machado to Los Angeles.
Yankees: LHP James Paxton (left knee inflammation) threw a bullpen session Tuesday and was wearing a brace to support his knee. He felt some discomfort in the knee but said it was not the same pain he experienced previously. Boone mentioned that Paxton could throw another bullpen later in the week if he feels good on Wednesday. ... RF Aaron Judge (strained left oblique) has yet to begin baseball activities although there have been small improvements every day, according to Boone.
Orioles: RHP David Hess (1-4, 5.50 ERA) will start the opener of Wednesday’s twinbill. RHP Andrew Cashner (4-1, 4.25) pitches the nightcap.
Yankees: LHP J.A. Happ (2-3, 4.36) is slated to start the opener. RHP Domingo German (7-1, 2.70) pitches Game 2, looking to add to his major league-leading win total.