Yankees’ Kluber out at least two months, Voit also to IL
NEW YORK -- Yankees right-hander Corey Kluber is expected to miss at least two months after hurting his pitching shoulder, and first baseman Luke Voit is also headed to the injured list with a right oblique strain.
New York manager Aaron Boone announced the diagnoses Wednesday shortly after the Yankees’ scheduled game against the Toronto Blue Jays was postponed due to a forecast of poor weather. The game will be made up as part of a doubleheader Thursday.
Kluber was pulled after three innings Tuesday against Toronto in his first outing following a no-hitter last week. An MRI on his shoulder Wednesday revealed a subscapularis strain, which will keep Kluber from throwing for at least four weeks, followed by at least four weeks of rehabilitation.
The two-time AL Cy Young Award winner is being sent for a second MRI with dyeing, a more invasive exam to ensure there’s no other damage.
Kluber was coming off a 101-pitch effort against the Rangers for the 35-year-old’s first no-hitter. It was a milestone high for a former ace recently beset by injury - his 2019 season with Cleveland ended that May 1 when he was hit on the forearm by a comebacker, and his debut for Texas in 2020 lasted just one inning before he tore a muscle in his right shoulder on July 26.
Boone doesn’t believe the no-hitter caused Kluber’s injury. Kluber said Tuesday he felt some tightness in the shoulder warming up for Wednesday’s game, but it’s unclear what caused the injury.
Kluber dropped to 4-3 with a 3.04 ERA.
Deivi Garcia and Michael King are the chief candidates to fill his rotation spot. Garcia, currently with Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, was already scheduled to rejoin the big league team and make a spot start this weekend against Detroit as New York plans 13 games in 13 days.
“We’ll have to pick up the slack for him, obviously,” Boone said.
New York entered Wednesday 28-20, one game behind the AL East-leading Tampa Bay Rays and a half-game behind the Boston Red Sox.
Voit’s diagnosis was even more of a shocker. Boone said the slugger began to feel discomfort in his side Saturday that worsened Tuesday, prompting an MRI that revealed a Grade 2 strain.
Voit, who led the majors with 22 home runs last season, is hitting .182 with one homer in 12 games after missing the start of the season following surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee during spring training.
“To have a setback here that’s going to land him on the IL, he’s very frustrated with that,” Boone said. “But hopefully it’s not going to keep him down too long.”
DJ LeMahieu and Mike Ford are expected to fill in for Voit at first base. Miguel Andujar could also see time there.
New York is hoping to get slugger Giancarlo Stanton back from the injured list with a quadriceps injury this week. Stanton ran on the field Tuesday and Wednesday, and Boone said he’s eyeing a Friday return, although he didn’t rule out Stanton as an option for Thursday.
The Yankees are also without outfielder Aaron Hicks, who was scheduled to have left wrist surgery Wednesday that could keep him out the rest of the season.
LeMahieu returned to the team Wednesday after going on the paternity list Tuesday for the birth of his first child. He was slated to play first base.
New York announced the postponement of Wednesday’s game in the Bronx about two hours before the slated first pitch. The opener of Thursday’s twinbill will be at 4:05 p.m., and the nightcap will start roughly 30 minutes after the final out of the first game but no earlier than 7:05 p.m.
Toronto right-hander Alek Manoah had been set to make his major league debut against Yankees right-hander Domingo German, who was already scheduled to pitch on five days of rest. German has a seven-inning scoreless streak.
The Yankees plan to start German in the early game and left-hander Jordan Montgomery in the nightcap Thursday. Manoah will pitch the opener for Toronto and Robbie Ray the second game.
There wasn’t a cloud in the sky over the Bronx when the postponement was announced, although the forecast projected thunderstorms to begin right around the 7:05 p.m. start time.