Jonathan Loaisiga smiled at the question.
He wasn’t just feeling "good" after throwing at 120 feet Tuesday afternoon in the Stadium outfield; the reliever felt "very good."
Loaisiga, on the injured list since Sept. 5 with a right shoulder strain, is scheduled to throw on flat ground again Thursday before progressing to a full bullpen session Friday afternoon before the Yankees start a key series against the Red Sox at Fenway Park.
If that goes well, the Yankees will have to make a decision: bring back the righthander, who has been their most consistent reliever this season, during an equally key series in Toronto the following week, or wait until they return home for a three-game set against the Rays on Oct. 1-3.
"Very encouraged," Aaron Boone said before Tuesday night’s game against the Rangers. "Another good step for him. I know each of these days has gone well for him as he's been reintroduced to throwing and stuff."
Boone watched Loaisiga’s game of catch Tuesday from the top step of the dugout.
"I think just seeing it come out [of his hand] kind of free and easy," Boone said of what stood out the most. "Doesn’t look like he's favoring anything. There's life on it without a lot of effort. It’s just catch play at 120 feet, but the first thing I noticed when I saw him throwing is, ‘Wow, that looks free and easy,’ which at least is encouraging to see."
Boone: Judge fine
Boone said having Aaron Judge as the DH on Tuesday night was a product of wanting to give the outfielder some rest and not because of any health concerns. Judge hit a three-run homer in the Yankees' 7-1 victory.