Tuesday, April 29, 2014

More Injuries: Ellsbury And Pineda (UPDATED)

Couple of disconcerting injury-related stories coming out right now.  Jacoby Ellsbury has apparently been bothered by a sore left hand for the last few days and while tests on it came back negative, it's bad enough that he's not in the lineup tonight.

The bigger and potentially worse news is in regards to Michael Pineda.  He reportedly shut himself down after just 1 inning of his simulated start today after feeling tightness in his right lat.  He's going for an MRI and according to Joe, his next scheduled start on May 5th is in jeopardy.

More on these stories as it comes out...

** UPDATE 3:55 PM- Joe told reporters that David Phelps would stay in the rotation if Pineda is unable to make his start on Monday.  Not a good omen for what could come back on this MRI. **

** UPDATE 10:22 PM- Via Erik Boland, Pineda has been diagnosed with a Grade I strain of his teres major muscle.  The team is saying he'll be shut down for 10 days, will be out for 3-4 weeks, and will undergo further evaluation by the team doctor.  This doesn't sound good at all. **

Welcoming Back Robbie Cano

(Dude is rocking some sweet facial hair.  Courtesy of Getty Images)

Does it feel like Robinson Cano has been gone for a really long time to anybody else?  In reality, he's been a non-Yankee for less than a month of his career, but it feels like he's been away forever to me.  He'll make his first trip back to The Stadium tonight when the Mariners come to town for a 3-game series, his first appearance back in front of the Yankee faithful since choosing Seattle and their 3 more years of guaranteed money over the Yankees and their 7-year offer.  Most of the beat guys are trying to stir the pot by writing and tweeting about how the fans should react during Cano's first plate appearance tonight, but to me it's a non-issue.  There's really only one acceptable option for how to treat Cano tonight.

Prospect Stock Watch: April 2014

(Courtesy of Mark LoMoglio/MiLB.com)

(Originally published at IIATMS/TYA)

It's been a tough start to the year for the farm system.  With a handful of top prospects missing the start of the season as they recovered from offseason health problems (Slade Heathcott, Greg Bird, Ty Hensley), the Yankees have watched more injuries strike down a significant portion of other recognizable names.  From Nik Turley and Jose Ramirez in Spring Training, to Tyler Austin last week, to the announcement of Jose Campos' season-ending TJS over the weekend, there's seemingly been a top guy going on the DL every few days.  That's created opportunities for other players to step up, but so far nobody has created a bigger name for himself than he already had.  With April 2 days away from ending and the sample sizes growing to an almost meaningful size, here are the guys who've helped and hurt their prospect stock the most in the first month.

Ryan Starts Rehab Assignment

Out since mid-March with a pinched nerve in his upper back, Brendan Ryan took a big step towards his return from the DL this past Sunday when he began his MiL rehab assignment with the High-A Tampa Yankees.  Ryan has started at shortstop in each of the last 2 games for Tampa, going 3-8 with 1 BB and 2 RBI.  I haven't read any specifics on how many innings he played in the 2 games, but I have to think it would have been reported if it was less than 9.

Ryan missed most of Spring Training, so his rehab assignment will not be as brief as Teix's or D-Rob's were.  Joe said he wanted to get Ryan a full compliment of ST plate appearances before calling him up, so 40-50 should do the trick.  That would put Ryan on track for another 8-10 rehab games and a return to the Major League roster in about 2 weeks.  The Yankees are playing without a true backup shortstop for Derek Jeter right now and they've already had to sit him for a few games to rest a tight quad.  Ryan was always meant to be the man for that job, and the sooner he can get back to do it the better.