Posted on July 23, 2017, by Bryan Zarpentine
One week after returning from the DL with a hamstring, New York Yankees second baseman Starlin Castro is right back where he started. The Yankees placed Castro back on the 10-day DL Saturday after he re-injured the hamstring earlier in the week. Castro missed a little over two weeks the first time around. There’s no time table on how much time he’ll miss this time.
Castro re-injured his hamstring while trying to field a slow ground ball on Wednesday. He did not leave the game and then played again on Thursday and Friday. However, bruising on the back of his hamstring following Friday’s game indicated that he needs time to recover, prompting the Yankees to put him back on the DL.
“He argued he was fine and he could play, and he’s still arguing he’s fine and he can play,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said Saturday. “But our concern is, if he really tears it, then you have a real problem. So we’re hoping it won’t be long and we’ll get him back. His strength is still there, but there’s a problem.”
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Girardi insists that Castro was not rushed back from the DL. Of course, a reoccurrence of the injury may cause the Yankees to be more careful when deciding to activate Castro from the DL this time around. The Yankees won’t put a timeline on Castro’s return. But it’s possible that Castro may not return until deep into August.
“He’s had issues and he’s had issues before we got him,” Girardi said of Castro’s injury history. “And we’re doing everything we can to protect him and stay away from it. But sometimes players that have hamstring pulls its becomes compromised and the chances of it happening again are greatly increased.”
With Castro returning to the DL, the Yankees have recalled rookie infielder Tyler Wade to take his spot on the roster. Girardi says the plan is for Wade and Ronald Torreyes to split time at second base. Wade was just 3 for 28 in the majors earlier this year. But he’s had a productive season at triple-A, and Girardi appears eager to see what he can do this time around.
“I thought, though, he did his job,” Girardi said of Wade’s performance earlier this year. “What I saw, the more at-bats he got, the better they got and things started to slow down. We talked about that before, it’s normal your first time up. Everyone goes through it. The next time up, you hope they’re more prepared.”
Of course, Torreyes has been a reliable utility man all season. Despite an obvious lack of power, the undersized Torreyes is hitting .282 on the season. He’s been particularly productive against left-handed pitchers. With Wade being a left-handed hitter, the Yankees figure to use a straight platoon between Torreyes and Wade.
Despite having one, possibly two capable backups, the loss of Castro to another hamstring injury is potentially significant for the Yankees. The Bronx Bombers continue to chase the Red Sox at the top of the AL East and they’re involved in a tight wild-card race. Castro is arguably having the best season of his career, and so losing him for an indefinite period of time is a huge blow to New York’s playoff hopes.