Jasson Dominguez #89 of the Yankees strikes out during the first...

Jasson Dominguez #89 of the Yankees strikes out during the first inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at Yankee Stadium on Friday, Sep. 8, 2023. Credit: Jim McIsaac

Jasson Dominguez’s meteoric development, which landed him in the majors much sooner than most expected, was abruptly interrupted Sunday afternoon with the startling news that he has a ulnar collateral ligament tear in his right elbow that will sideline him for at least the next nine to 10 months.

“Crushed for him,” a somber Aaron Boone said after the Yankees’ wild 4-3 victory over the Brewers in 13 innings. “But he’ll have great support. We’ve seen how he handles everything; he’s even handling this well. He’ll be fine. He’s going to come out of this better and stronger and we’ll support him the whole way.”

The switch-hitting Dominguez, 8-for-31 (.258) with four homers, seven RBIs and a .980 OPS in the first eight games of his big-league career after getting called up from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre (after only nine games there), said he first felt discomfort in the elbow the previous Sunday in Houston.

“I felt like something wasn’t right, but not preventing me to play,” he said through his interpreter after Sunday’s game, one in which he was a last-minute scratch because he could not make it through batting practice in the indoor cages. “We had a day off on Monday, so Tuesday it felt about the same, but warming up and getting loose for the game, it got to the point where I could play. And then Wednesday, that’s when I told the trainers that I was feeling some discomfort that wasn’t going away. Since Wednesday, it’s gotten progressively worse.”

Dominguez, who said he will undergo surgery “as soon as possible,” could not pinpoint one action or swing that caused the initial discomfort. But he said he had not felt anything in the elbow at any point in the season, which he started with Double-A Somerset.

Of receiving the diagnosis after undergoing testing earlier in the day, Dominguez said: “Definitely very shocking news. Never expecting for this to be the result. Now understanding what happened, you have to look forward and go through it.”

From the time he walked into the clubhouse for his first big-league spring training, Dominguez impressed his veteran teammates with his easygoing demeanor and just the right amount of confidence, not to mention the skill set that earned him the nickname “the Martian” from the time the Yankees signed him out of the Dominican Republic for a franchise-record $5.1 million signing bonus in July 2019.

Dominguez, as hyped a prospect as the Yankees have had in years, arrived in Houston on Sept. 1 and delivered immediately, homering on his first big-league swing — off future Hall of Famer Justin Verlander, no less. He homered in three of his first five games, all the while playing a solid centerfield and continuing to impress his major league teammates. As was the case in spring training, they raved about his abilities but also his advanced maturity.

The latter was on display Sunday. After learning that his 2023 season was over and that he’ll likely miss most, if not all, of 2024, Dominguez answered questions easily and evenly, at times even flashing a smile.

“Really good experience. Fortunate,” he said of his brief taste of the majors. “Fortunate to be here, to be able to play those eight games and really see how it is inside this clubhouse in the big leagues. Really good experience.”

Boone, clearly affected by the news, which he found out about shortly after the game, called it “a moment of time in the grand scheme of things” for a young player with so much potential.

“It’s about taking care of it now,” Boone said. “It’s sports. Unfortunately, you have tough things that happen all the time. This is something that he should completely recover and bounce back from. But in the moment, you’re crushed for the kid.”

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