It’s only been three games, but the New York Yankees have had a big issue with their outfielders getting injured. With Jacoby Ellsbury, Clint Frazier, and Aaron Hicks on the disabled list already, the list grew on Saturday when Billy McKinney left the game in the first inning after colliding into the left field wall.
McKinney would end up leaving the game due to what the Yankees called a left shoulder AC sprain. Here is the tweet courtesy of Brendan Kuty of NJ.com:
Left shoulder AC sprain for Billy McKinney. X-rays didn’t show damage. #Yankees
— Brendan Kuty (@BrendanKutyNJ) March 31, 2018
Billy McKinney to DL. Miguel Andujar coming up. Tyler Wade now in the mix as an outfielder.
— Bryan Hoch (@BryanHoch) March 31, 2018
Since the Yankees do not have another healthy outfielder on the 40-man roster, this move makes the most sense. Since the Triple-A season doesn’t start until Friday and Ellsbury is eligible to come off the DL on Thursday, the Yankees can use Andujar in their infield while using someone like Tyler Wade in the outfield.
While Wade has played the outfield before, it is not a position he is that familiar with. He has played 29 career games in the minor leagues in the outfield with 12 of those games coming in left field. Since Aaron Judge played center field yesterday, would Wade move to one of the corners until Thursday? At the very least, he is going to get his opportunity to shine after the two-run double he had on Friday night.
As for Andujar, it will be interesting to see how Boone is able to rotate him into the lineup. The Yankees do have a lot of versatility on the roster and Andujar could give Brandon Drury days off at third or join in on the Tyler Austin/Neil Walker platoon at first. Austin made his case for more playing time on Saturday with two home runs in the 5-3 loss to the Blue Jays.
Right now, the Yankees can ill afford any more injuries to their outfield. The depth that they had in the offseason is starting to dwindle down by the day. Brett Gardner was going to get the afternoon off today, but the McKinney injury meant that he had to enter the game.