Aaron Judge is still riding the bench, due to an injury that occurred on July 26. During the game, Judge was hit on the outside of his right wrist by a ball going 94 mph. Judge was taken to the hospital that day, and as I said, he’s still on the bench. Judge made a statement on Thursday letting fans know whats going on:
“I’ve got a broken bone. It’s still fractured. I’ve got to give it time to heal. Just got to make sure I’m 100 percent before I got back out there because I don’t want to have a setback.”
The Yankees had originally given him a three-week prognosis for a return from this fracture. But was that unreasonable? Maybe optimistic, but certainly not unreasonable. If fans are upset by this, they shouldn’t be. This is a cautious approach to bringing a player back. If they said that he would only sit for 3 weeks and then he’s back in the game, there’s a good chance that he could get reinjured. If that were to happen, then there’s a good chance that he would be out for longer. Brian Cashman acknowledged on Wednesday that a three-week estimate was extremely optimistic:
“We probably over-expected maybe because of how he’s responded in past years with anything pain-related. He’s as tough as nails, but this is going to be a little bit longer than we hoped. It’s going to take as long as it needs to take, and we’re going to give him that time because you don’t want to mess things up and push him through something when he’s not ready.”
Think about it from a playoff perspective. Sure, they might risk losing some games in his absence, but they might not. Let’s assume for a moment that they lose a couple of games and it puts them back in the standings. Wouldn’t it be better to make it to the playoffs with Judge healthy and able to play, than to risk his health by pushing him to play some games in August? Please note that I am not a doctor and I don’t know the extent of Judge’s injuries, but I think this kind of thinking can be applied to almost anything. If we just look at a short-term solution, we often miss out on the bigger, long-term perspective.
Judge also says, “the wrist is feeling all right. It could be better. I feel like hopefully, I’ll swing a bat here in the next couple of days or week sometime. We don’t have a timetable on that yet. I know shortly we should start ramping it up and get going, get swinging again.”
While this doesn’t necessarily mean that he’ll be back any time soon, I definitely think that the Yankees are taking the best approach they can do this one. If they push too hard, he might end up getting injured further, and potentially worse, putting him in a situation that he might not be able to come back from.