The injury situation on the New York Yankees just went from worrisome to critical.
They are already down two members of the starting rotation, Frankie Montas and Carlos Rodon, and two crucial bullpen arms in Tommy Kahnle and Lou Trivino.
As if that wasn’t enough, the injury gods have taken another victim: starting center fielder Harrison Bader.
Bader, known for his defensive prowess, won’t be available for the start of the season and will start the year on the injured list.
Aaron Boone says that Harrison Bader will likely start the season on the IL with a left oblique strain, per @MaxTGoodman pic.twitter.com/l84jXKS9u0
— Talkin' Yanks (@TalkinYanks) March 10, 2023
The player felt discomfort during Wednesday’s spring training game and is now expected to be absent for a relatively long time.
Yankees manager Aaron Boone did not provide an official timeline, though.
Oblique strains are more week-to-week than day-to-day, though.
Oblique strains are extremely tricky injuries: just ask New York Mets starter Max Scherzer who had two separate IL stints last year with oblique strains.
The Yankees need to make sure he is 100 percent pain free to let him start swinging again.
Bader is a crucial component of the Yankees’ 2023 team.
The team brought him in for his stellar defense and intriguing power-speed combination at the plate.
He was also a postseason hero last year with five home runs in two series.
Getting him healthy should be a priority because he changes the game defensively.
Now, the Yanks are probably forced to pencil Aaron Judge as their starting center fielder for as long as Bader is out.
With so many injury issues, it makes one wonder if the Yankees will go to free agency or the trade market to solidify their depth.NEXT: Yankees Analyst Comments On Carlos Rodon's Injury