Joe Girardi said he was “shocked” to learn after the Yankees’ loss to Houston Friday night that Aroldis Chapman was complaining of shoulder trouble. General manager Brian Cashman said “nothing had been a concern” until that point.
But the closer revealed at a news conference before Sunday’s doubleheader against the Astros at Yankee Stadium that the shoulder had been bothering him for about a couple of weeks. He underwent an MRI on Saturday and was placed on the 10-day disabled list Sunday with inflammation of the left rotator cuff. Girardi said it’s bursitis and tendinitis. Cashman said he won’t throw for two weeks.
So when will he return?
“You’re probably looking at a minimum of a month — if everything goes right,” Cashman said.
Chapman struggled Friday night and didn’t make it through the ninth inning. The same went for his previous outing.
“I was trying to work through it,” Chapman said through an interpreter. “I was getting treatment, so I believed it was going to go away with the treatment that I was getting. Also, the cold weather I thought was affecting me a little bit . . . But eventually it got a little worse. So I basically had to say it was more that I can handle.”
There was all that talk about manager Joe Maddon over-using Chapman last fall to help his Cubs halt their World Series drought that had lasted more than a century. He appeared five times in the Series.
“It’s really hard to say that was the cause because not too long ago I felt great,” Chapman said.
Dellin Betances, who had a so-so stint as the closer after Chapman was traded to Chicago late last July, will take his place in the ninth inning. Tyler Clippard will work the eighth.
Righthander Chad Green was summoned from Triple-A to take Chapman’s place on the roster. Green entered Sunday’s game in the third inning, replacing starter Luis Severino, who was ineffective. Green pitched well, allowing just one hit in 3 2⁄3 innings.