Yankees cautious with Sanchez's leg cramps

Catcher expected back for weekend series vs. Angels; Kahnle, Bird on way back

May 23rd, 2018

ARLINGTON -- lobbied to get back behind the plate on Wednesday, one night after he was forced to leave the Yankees' 6-4 loss to the Rangers due to cramping in his right calf.

Yankees manager Aaron Boone told his starting catcher that he'd prefer to hold Sanchez back, considering the Yankees have an off-day on Thursday, and said that he expects Sanchez to be ready to play on Friday against the Angels.

"I feel like we dodged a bullet," Boone said. "He came out here and did some agility running workouts before and checked out OK. He was actually texting me early [Wednesday] morning that he was good to go, but with this off-day tomorrow, it's probably best to hold him back. I think he's fine, and he'll be an option for us if we need him."

It is the second occurrence of right calf cramps this season for Sanchez, who left an April 6 extra-inning contest against the Orioles under similar circumstances. Sanchez missed two games, plus an off-day, before returning to the lineup as a designated hitter on April 10 against the Red Sox.

"I think it's less [severe]," Boone said. "We haven't dealt with a lot of heat yet, so hopefully we squashed it and it won't be an issue."

Boone said that his call was made easier by 's recent success. Romine entered play on Wednesday hitting .471 (8-for-17) with three doubles and two homers during a six-game hit streak.

"Ro's playing really well," Boone said. "Ro impacts the game in so many positive ways with the way he's swinging the bat. It's always hard to keep Gary down, because we know what he's capable of on any given night, and so it's hard to sit down one of your dudes. But yes, Ro playing the way he is, we at least feel like we're putting in a guy that can impact the game."

Comeback trail

The Yankees expect to have right-hander Tommy Kahnle and first baseman Greg Bird back on the active roster this weekend against the Angels. Kahnle is scheduled to pitch for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Wednesday and could be activated on Friday or Saturday, while Boone said there is "a decent shot" that Bird could be activated on Saturday or Sunday.

In other updates, right-hander (left oblique strain) has resumed throwing off a mound, while right-hander (right back strain) has pitched in simulated games and is nearing a rehab assignment.

He said it

"This job's got me swearing again." -- Boone, on his first managerial ejection on Tuesday

This date in Yankees history

May 23, 1962: Joe Pepitone hit two homers in a nine-run eighth inning as the Yankees defeated the Athletics, 13-7, at Yankee Stadium. Pepitone remains one of four Yankees to homer twice in a single inning. The others are Joe DiMaggio, Cliff Johnson and Alex Rodriguez.