TORONTO – New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi said Monday he believes right-hander Masahiro Tanaka will be healthy enough to return to action next week after suffering a hamstring injury.
Tanaka (12-7) was scheduled to start against the Toronto Blue Jays on Wednesday but will miss the game after straining his right hamstring while running out a bunt in the second inning of Friday’s loss to the New York Mets.
No fixed date has been set for Tanaka’s return.
“Our thought is, it would be the next turn through that he would be in the rotation,” Girardi said. “So, his day would have been Wednesday. So sometime next week is probably what we are thinking about.”
Both Girardi and general manager Brian Cashman admitted the Yankees’ place in the American League East race could factor into when Tanaka next starts. If they drop out of the divisional race the Yankees could work their rotation to line up Tanaka to start a wildcard game.
“Those things will all definitely be part of the conversation,” said Cashman.
Cashman said he thinks that Tanaka’s injury is “something that is only minor” and that he may not even have to have it reevaluated.
“Just give him that one skip and then plug him back in,” Cashman said.
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