BALTIMORE — When the Yankees start a critical trip in Oakland a week from Monday, Aaron Boone said he’s “optimistic” that two key cogs will be back with them.
Gary Sanchez, out since July 24 with a right groin strain, came through the first game of his rehab assignment with the Gulf Coast League Yankees on Saturday and is slated to join Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Monday night at Lehigh Valley.
“He came out fine,” Boone said.
Didi Gregorius (left heel contusion), who swung a bat Sunday, is “on a really good track,” Boone said, and will be evaluated by the team doctor Monday to plan the next step.
As for the pair being in the lineup for the first game against the surging A’s, Boone said: “I think that’s certainly possible.”
Boone said Sanchez might even “be ready to join us hopefully by the end of [this] week,” meaning the catcher could get a game or two in at home before the trip.
“I think his conditioning right now is as good as it’s been all year,” Boone said. “I feel like physically he’s in a really good place.”
Despite how well Austin Romine has performed in Sanchez’s absence, there’s no catcher controversy regarding playing time.
“Ro will play . . . that’s something that’s fluid,” Boone said. “But Gary’s coming back as our catcher.”
No swings for Judge
The news continues not to be as positive for Aaron Judge, who has been on the DL since July 27 with a chip fracture in his right wrist and has yet to pick up a bat.
“Again, waiting for that pain to get out,” Boone said. “Once that fracture has healed, then we go.”
Judge has been working on conditioning and some light throwing.