When Hal Steinbrenner sits down this off-season to break down the problematic 2023 MLB season for the New York Yankees, injury woes will top the list. While baseball is a high-risk and demanding athletic sport, there is a limit to everything. Injuries are not uncommon, but the magnitude and frequency indeed are concerning factors.
Starting from Aaron Judge’s decisive toe injury to Jasson Dominguez’s UCL tear, an awful number of players landed on IL this season alone. The startling numbers have put the training staff, responsible for player health and performance, into focus. Recently, skipper Aaron Boone shared an interesting reaction to the same.
Aaron Boone Defends Yankees Training Staff! Says Player Injuries Were Complete Misfortune!
A concerning stat sums up how injury woes badly marred the New York Yankees’ 2023 MLB season. This year alone, the team sent 28 players to the IL for a total of as many as 37 stints. Having said that, this isn’t the first time the organization faced such an unprecedented situation. While 28 players accumulated 33 IL stints in 2022, 35 players contributed to 49 stints in 2021. In 2019, the team saw a high 30 players land in 39 IL stints altogether, which forced the front office to overhaul the training staff. Subsequently, Mark Cressey (director of player health and performance), Tim Lentych (head athletic trainer), Michael Schuk (director of medicine and rehab), and Donovan Santas (assistant director of health and performance) joined the team.
However, the results remained unchanged. So should the new set of staff be fired again? Well, the Yankees skipper believes they will remain a part of the entire review process. Having said that, the skipper refuses to hold the conditioning staff accountable for player injuries. He said that a lot of injuries, such as Aaron Judge banging his toe on a concrete slab, were an absolute case of misfortune. These things are unavoidable. Also, a major part of the roster consists of veterans, which makes them more susceptible to injuries. “We’re constantly trying to be better at treating, evaluating, avoiding injuries. Obviously, we can’t avoid all things,” added Boone. The skipper feels that, in a lot of ways, the training staff is doing a decent job. It’s just that it is not visible in the actual raw numbers.
Aaron Judge Likely To Avoid Off-Season Surgery!
A particular injury that ultimately dismantled the New York Yankees’ postseason campaign was captain Aaron Judge’s toe injury. He hit the concrete slab of the Dodgers stadium’s fence and tore the ligament tissue of his right toe. While the doctors allowed him to play through with it after two months of rehab, the threat of an off-season surgery always loomed over his shoulder.
However, it seems the captain is set to dodge the bullet. As per skipper Aaron Boone, Aaron Judge will likely avoid the toe surgery. He has made excellent progress to regain almost 100% of his fitness. Judge, too, addressed the possibility and said that he desperately wants to avoid going under the knife. But at the same time, he has to look where he stands in a few weeks to reach a consensus.