On the day they welcomed back Aaron Hicks, the Yankees dealt with two more injuries.
Jonathan Loaisiga, who was scheduled to start Monday night's game against the Orioles before it was postponed because of unplayable field conditions, was placed on the 10-day injured list with a right shoulder strain and won’t pick up a baseball for four weeks.
The second injury may be more serious. Miguel Andujar, who has struggled since returning from a shoulder injury, was put back on the IL.
The Yankees thought Andujar had dodged season-ending surgery, but last year’s American League Rookie of the Year runner-up is back to being a candidate to go under the knife, Aaron Boone said.
Andujar already had lost his third-base job to Gio Urshela. Now, Boone said, the Yankees are going to do more tests on Andujar’s right shoulder injury, which the team called a small tear in the labrum when Andujar initially went on the IL on April 1.
“We’ll see,” Boone said when asked if surgery is back on the table. “He’s got a couple opinions going into this and both were not surgery. I think we’ll look at this again as far as reimaging, reevaluating. I wouldn’t say it’s necessarily off the table, but I wouldn’t say even more so that it’s on now. It’s just we’ve got to get a better handle on this and then probably just get him built up in the best way possible if we can move forward with that.”
The Yankees tried that after Andujar was injured while diving back into third base on a pickoff attempt on March 31. Andujar returned on May 4, made two errors at third in his first game back, and has been used mostly as a designated hitter. But he has three hits in 34 at-bats since coming off the IL and is batting .128 with one RBI in 12 games this season.
Last year, Andujar hit .297 with 47 doubles, 27 homers and 92 RBIs in 149 games. His absence has been mitigated by the surprising emergence of Urshela, who went into Monday batting .341 with two homers and 15 RBIs in 32 games and has flashed stellar defense at third base.
Boone said it’s possible that the shoulder injury has affected Andujar’s production since his return from the IL.
“[I] do feel like the injury is certainly a contributing factor to some of the struggles,” he said. “I think we’ll kind of reassess all of that and then try and get a plan in place to try to get him back.” He also said, “Just kind of give it a little timeout to kind of declare itself a little bit more and reevaluate it.’’
The Yankees announced Andujar’s return to the IL at 5:30 p.m., a little more than three hours before the game was postponed (it will be made up Wednesday as part of a single-admission doubleheader beginning at 3 p.m.). They have had 17 players on the IL this season, and Andujar is the first one to go on twice.
Hicks (lower-back strain) was activated from the IL on Monday and was put in the lineup at the leadoff spot to make his season debut before the game was postponed. Mike Tauchman was sent to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Loaisiga went on the IL and the Yankees recalled righthanded starter Chance Adams and lefthanded reliever Nestor Cortes Jr. from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
Loaisiga was filling in for James Paxton, who is on the IL with left knee inflammation. Luis Cessa replaced Loaisiga as the scheduled starter, and Boone had said he expected Cessa to go two or three innings. Adams was recalled to provide backup.
As a minor-leaguer, Loaisiga missed two seasons with a shoulder injury. He also had Tommy John surgery.