Yankees shortstop Didi Gregorius exited the team’s game Sunday with a “pretty significant” heel bruise and could be headed for the disabled list, manager Aaron Boone told Lindsay Adler of The Athletic and other reporters. He’d be the third integral member of the Yankees’ offense on the DL, joining right fielder Aaron Judge and catcher Gary Sanchez, with the Bombers trying to hold off the AL West runner-up (Houston, Oakland or Seattle) for homefield advantage in this year’s wild-card round. New York has a 3 1/2-game edge on that spot and a seven-game lead on a playoff position, thanks in part to Gregorius – who has slashed .270/.333/.482 (116 wRC+) with 22 home runs and 4.0 fWAR in 507 plate appearances. Replacing Gregorius would be a difficult task, then, and second baseman Gleyber Torres stands out as the Yankees’ top in-house option if the former does hit the DL. Torres has struggled mightily in the second half of his rookie year, though, and moving him off the keystone would force the Yankees to find a different starter there – perhaps Neil Walker (who has handled right field of late), Ronald Torreyes or Tyler Wade. Of course, New York could still bolster its lineup via trade this month, which it may feel compelled to do should Gregorius require a lengthy absence.
A few more injury notes from the AL…
- Orioles designated hitter Mark Trumbo is “likely” going to the DL on account of right knee inflammation, Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com tweets. Trumbo revealed in May that he has arthritis in that knee, though it hasn’t stopped him from posting fairly typical numbers in 2018. The 32-year-old has recorded a 106 wRC+, matching his career figure, across 355 PAs. That’s not an inspiring mark, however, and combining Trumbo’s so-so production with his knee problems and remaining salary may make it all but impossible for the rebuilding Orioles to trade him. Trumbo will earn $13.5MM in 2019, the final season of a three-year, $37.5MM contract that hasn’t worked out for Baltimore thus far.
- As with Trumbo, White Sox right fielder Avisail Garcia is battling his own right knee issues, Tom Musick of the Chicago Sun-Times explains. The plan is for Garcia to undergo arthroscopic surgery in the offseason, per Musick, but even though the White Sox are well out of contention, they don’t plan on shutting him down for 2018. This has already been an abbreviated campaign for Garcia, who missed nearly two months from April to June because of a hamstring strain. Perhaps thanks in part to his injury issues, the 27-year-old has slashed a disappointing .234/.264/.451 (90 wRC+) in 250 PAs after thriving in 2017. Garcia is slated to go through arbitration for the final time over the winter.
- Athletics outfielder Matt Joyce, who hasn’t played since July 4 because of a back strain, will rejoin the team when rosters expand in September, Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports. Joyce will begin a rehab assignment Tuesday, though Slusser suggests that playing time could be limited for the 34-year-old when he does return to Oakland. After offering solid production over the previous couple years, Joyce has batted just .203/.311/.359 (87 wRC+) in 226 PAs this season, and the A’s have been on a tear without him.