ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Though, in the words of Aaron Boone, Isiah Kiner-Falefa was “pretty encouraged” by how he felt Monday compared with Sunday when tightness in his left hamstring kept him out of the lineup in Toronto, the shortstop was still a no-go for Monday night’s series opener against the Rays at Tropicana Field.
“We’ll take ground balls during BP and we’ll see about his availability tonight,” Boone said before the game. “I don’t think it’s going to be anything long term. I made up the lineup [Sunday night] keeping him out of the lineup, but we’re at least encouraged by how he’s doing today.”
Kiner-Falefa, who did not take batting practice the field Monday but did go through a full workout taking grounders at short before the game and also ran on the field and appeared no worse for the wear after doing any of it, first felt the discomfort scoring a run in the fourth inning of Saturday’s 4-0 victory over the Blue Jays.
“We decided it was best to take it slow,” Kiner-Falefa said Sunday. “That way it’s just a couple days, one day, I don’t know. I should hopefully be ready to go tomorrow.”
Not quite but, again, the shortstop arrived at the ballpark Monday feeling better and, as a result Boone said, there were no tests scheduled.
Could Kiner-Falefa possibly pinch run, a spot the Yankees could have used him for Sunday when Giancarlo Stanton walked with one out in the ninth Sunday in Toronto?
“So far he’s encouraged with the things he’s gone through today in his warmup and everything,” Boone said. “So we’ll kind of make that a game-time decision and see where he’s at.”
Big step upcoming for Domingo
Domingo German, who started the season on the 60-day IL with a right shoulder impingement, will have his 30-day rehab clock officially start Wednesday when he pitches for Class-A Tampa.
Chapman, Britton to throw
Aroldis Chapman, out since May 24 with left Achilles tendinitis, will throw live BP Tuesday morning at the club’s minor league complex here. Boone indicated the lefthander is likely to be sent on a rehab assignment soon thereafter.
Meanwhile, Zack Britton, who is aiming for a late August/early September return after starting the season on the IL recovering from the UCL reconstruction surgery he underwent late last season, is also scheduled to face hitters at the minor league complex. His timeframe for a return, if indeed he is able to make it back this season, has not yet been determined.
Latest on Lo
Righthander Jonathan Loaisiga, on the IL since May 25 with right shoulder inflammation, played catch at 110 feet Monday and soon will be extended out to 120 feet. There is no timetable for his return.