PHOENIX — DJ LeMahieu, out of the lineup a second straight game Wednesday, painted an optimistic picture regarding the inflammation in his right knee.
“Much better than on Sunday,” LeMahieu said Wednesday morning.
But, the infielder acknowledged, even in saying he anticipates being able to play Friday when the Yankees start a three-game series against the Twins, all isn’t right with the knee, either.
“It’s pretty sore,” he said. “But I think I’m really close.”
LeMahieu is day-to-day after leaving Sunday’s game against the Giants with inflammation in the knee, caused when he fouled a ball off it Friday night. He had X-rays Sunday that came back negative and an MRI he underwent here Monday confirmed the inflammation but showed no other damage.
Though LaMahieu said before the game “I feel much better moving around,” Aaron Boone said after Wednesday’s 3-2 loss that he would have used the infielder only “in an emergency.” LaMahieu walked through the clubhouse after the game with a huge wrap on the knee, though Boone said the “hope” is LaMahieu can return Friday.
“I think it’s pretty close to being ready to be full-go again,” LaMahieu said.
Troy Tulowitzki, thought to be close to returning, was removed from his rehab outing with High-A Tampa Wednesday because of “tightness” in his left calf, the Yankees said. Tulowitzki has been on the IL since April 4 with a left calf strain.
Get outta here
With a K-9 German Sheppard in tow, two members of the Maricopa Sheriff’s department strolled into the Yankees clubhouse Wednesday morning and produced baseballs from their pants pockets for CC Sabathia, who recorded his 3,000th career strikeout Friday night, to sign.
Security personnel — whether it be uniformed officers or stadium security — asking Yankees players for autographs on the road is unusual (the behavior is frowned upon) but not unprecedented. The Bombers, for example, have experienced issues with that in Toronto and Chicago in recent years. But those acts of unprofessionalism typically don’t take place so brazenly in the clubhouse, in front of the media no less. When one moved on to Aaron Judge, seated on a clubhouse couch watching TV with his teammates, before the injured rightfielder had a chance to react, both officers were ushered out by Mark Kafalas, the Yankees director of team security.