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Yankees still playing Giancarlo Stanton waiting game

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Giancarlo Stanton (hamstring) has been out for three weeks and is still “not all the way out of the woods yet” in his recovery, according to Aaron Boone.

“He’s going through progressions,” Boone said Sunday of Stanton, who had a light rehab day Sunday. “He’s running about 75-80 percent… We just want to make sure we get him to the finish line with the injury.”

Stanton last played on Aug. 8. He’s on the injured list along with Aaron Judge (calf) and there’s no telling when either outfielder might be ready to return with less than a month remaining in the regular season.


Zack Britton (hamstring) threw a bullpen Sunday and Boone believes he’ll be back soon. The left-hander was able to sprint off the mound during PFP drills and Boone said he is expected back “this week.”

“He’s such an important piece to what we try to do around here all the time,” Boone said.

The Yankees have seen high-end relievers Chad Green, Adam Ottavino and Aroldis Chapman all surrender game-altering homers in recent days.

“We understand there’s gonna be pitfalls along the way,” Boone said. “Even in the most successful seasons a great reliever is gonna give up a game we have. We’re equipped to handle that… Nothing really changes with the confidence we have in these guys. We look forward to them continuing to go out there and do their job the next time they get the opportunity.”


Boone said Gio Urshela would be available off the bench for the first game of Sunday’s doubleheader against the Mets and in the lineup for the second game after sitting out two days because of bone spurs in his elbow.

The manager said Urshela felt discomfort in the elbow on a swing in his final at-bat against Atlanta, but the spur may have been there for a while.

“It was almost like a hyperextension, but the symptoms have dissipated a lot the last couple of days,” Boone said. “It doesn’t seem to be a real concern at this point. We feel like it’s fine.”

Gleyber Torres (hamstring) was also doing drills pregame.


Gary Sanchez took extra batting practice Sunday. Boone said Kyle Higashioka (oblique) is expected to rejoin the team in the “next couple of days.” Asked if the Yankees would then carry three catchers, Boone said, “We’ll see.”

They would risk losing Erik Kratz if they optoned him to the alternate site.


With the A’s-Astros game postponed Sunday due to a COVID case with Oakland, Boone said he remains “hopeful” MLB will finish the season.

“We’ve got to contain it on a large scale,” Boone said. “We haven’t had any cases going back to [Chapman] in summer camp [but] you can see [how] one posiitve test from another team playing another team changes your week and schedule in a hurry.”


Gerrit Cole will start Monday against Tampa Bay, setting up the rotation against the Rays, followed by Masahiro Tanaka and Jordan Montgomery. J.A. Happ will start Thursday’s makeup game against the Mets at Citi Field.

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