11:50pm: Bader is expected to miss at least “a few weeks,” Boone said after tonight’s win over the Mariners (relayed by Chris Kirschner of the Athletic).
8:20pm: The Yankees placed center fielder Harrison Bader on the 10-day injured list with a right hamstring strain before this evening’s game in Seattle. New York also optioned catcher Ben Rortvedt to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Fellow backstop Jose Trevino has been activated from his own IL stint, while Franchy Cordero was recalled to take Bader’s spot in the outfield.
Bader’s IL placement comes as little surprise. Manager Aaron Boone acknowledged it was a possibility this morning after Bader had left last night’s game. He underwent an MRI this morning. It’s not clear how significant the strain is or how long the Yankees expect him to be sidelined, but he’ll be out for at least a week and a half.
It’s the second time this year in which Bader has landed on the shelf. He missed the first month of the season with an oblique strain. Since returning, he’s been one of New York’s best players. Bader is hitting .267/.295/.511 with six homers and stolen bases apiece in 26 games. He’s paired that with characteristically excellent defense over his 205 1/3 innings of center field work. When healthy, Bader has shown the ability to be a very productive two-way outfielder. He’s unfortunately been no stranger to the IL, though, as he’s yet to surpass 427 MLB plate appearances in a season.
That combination of productivity but a checkered injury history will make Bader an interesting free agent case next winter. Alongside Cody Bellinger and the older Kevin Kiermaier, he’s slated to top the center field class. His market will obviously be determined in large part by how quickly he makes his return and his form down the stretch.
Aaron Judge got the bulk of the center field work last time Bader was on the shelf. Greg Allen, who wasn’t on the roster last month, is getting the nod there tonight. Judge is in right field with Isiah Kiner-Falefa manning left against Seattle righty Logan Gilbert.