TORONTO — CC Sabathia was down after injuring his right knee on Tuesday night, but an MRI taken on Wednesday surprisingly came back clean. “There’s no new damage,” Joe Girardi said.
It’s unknown if Sabathia will still require a DL stint anyway. The manager wouldn’t totally rule out his 37-year-old lefty making his next start, which would be on Sunday against Boston.
The Yankees plan to see how Sabathia is when they return home on Friday.
Sabathia tweaked his knee sometime in the third inning and felt “pain.”
Yankees’ Aaron Hicks expected back Friday vs. Red Sox
“We’ll let the doctors handle that through some medication and see if we can knock that out, because to me that’s key,” Girardi said. “The key for him has been bringing stability back in the knee, and the brace has been a big part of that. But when you’re landing and you have pain every pitch, you’re going to have a hard time, and that’s what we saw last night. So we have to knock that out.”
If Sabathia can’t go, Jordan Montgomery is the leading candidate to be brought back from Triple-A Scranton. The 24-year-old rookie southpaw is slated to start for the RailRiders on Saturday.
The Yankees are 13-6 in Sabathia’s 2017 starts, but he’s posted an 8.10 ERA over his last three outings.
Sabathia missed about three weeks earlier in the season due to a left hamstring strain.
Aaron Hicks (oblique) is expected back on Friday against the Red Sox, Joe Girardi said.
Hicks hasn’t played since June 25. He homered during a minor-league rehab game with Double-A Trenton on Wednesday.
Greg Bird (ankle) and Starlin Castro (hamstring) are both expected to begin minor-league rehab stints sometime next week.
Joe Girardi described Bird as “a little ahead” of Castro in terms of his progress toward going out for a rehab assignment.
Clint Frazier was a late scratch from the lineup due to oblique tightness. He will undergo an MRI on Thursday. Frazier said he has been feeling it for a few days.
“I’m not too concerned, honestly,” Frazier said. Joe Girardi added: “I don’t think it’s really significant.”
Garrett Cooper replaced Frazier in the No. 8 hole, with Chase Headley moving from first to DH. Aaron Judge, who was supposed to DH, got the start in right.
Gary Sanchez (hand/wrist) was fine and back in the lineup at catcher on Wednesday after being hit by a pitch in the eighth inning on Tuesday. Sanchez and Aaron Judge both took early batting practice before Wednesday’s game. … Didi Gregorius hit cleanup, with Joe Girardi wanting to separate his righties. Clint Frazier, 5 for his last 33, was moved down to eighth. Hot-hitting Chase Headley was in the No. 2 hole.
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