Yankees manager Aaron Boone said Friday that Aaron Judge received another platelet-rich plasma injection on his sprained right toe but continues to make progress on an injury that has him sidelined for the second time this season.
“They hit the other ligament that was still giving him some of the soreness,” Boone said prior to New York opening a three-game series at Boston. “So, he had that yesterday and is doing a lot better today. So, nothing in the way of baseball stuff the next probably 48 hours. But he’s doing better.”
Judge banged his right toe while making a running catch and crashing into the outfield fence during the eighth inning of New York’s 6-3 win over the Dodgers on June 3.
In other injury updates, Boone said outfielder Harrison Bader (strained right hamstring) will make at least two more rehab appearances in the minors before possibly rejoining the team as early as Tuesday. Left-hander Carlos Rodón (strained left forearm) is slated to begin rehab starts in Double-A Somerset and may need as many as three starts. Left-hander Nestor Cortes may begin playing catch this weekend, with July being the earliest he could be back.
Boone didn’t rule out that Judge could return before the All-Star break.
“I think there’s a shot for that, Boone said. “That said, I don’t know. I think he could be back in a week. I think he could be back in four. I don’t know. We have to get to a point where we’re starting to move the ball from a physical activity and baseball standpoint. Hopefully, the latest PRP is part of speeding that process up.”
Asked if surgery had been ruled out at this point, Boone said he wasn’t sure, but the hope is that the injection will help him avoid those discussions.
“I don’t know. I don’t think so, but that’s over my head,” he said. “My understanding is the ligament should heal over time. Anytime you strain or tear in the ligaments, it takes time to heal that obviously. (Plasma injections) hopefully speed that process up. So, hopefully, he continues to move in the right direction.”
He’s basing his assessment that Judge is feeling better on what what he’s saying and how he’s observed him moving when he’s seen him on the clubhouse.
Boone is optimistic that Judge could begin working on range of motion and doing some work in the pool soon.
“It starts in simple things like his gait. Basic, light things and then as you kind of graduate through his rehab,” Boone said. “Hopefully you start to get there in the next couple of days."