Yankees injury updates: Sanchez, CC

Catcher inching closer to return; lefty anticipates missing just one start

August 14th, 2018
New York Yankees' Gary Sanchez reacts after hitting a two-run home run during the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Seattle Mariners at Yankee Stadium Wednesday, June 20, 2018, in New York. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)Seth Wenig/AP

NEW YORK -- On the 10-day disabled list since July 24 with a strained right groin, catcher may be nearing his return to game action.
Prior to Tuesday's game against the Rays, manager Aaron Boone said that Sanchez will start to ramp up his baseball activity this week before heading back to Tampa, Fla., over the weekend to finish his workouts. The hope is that Sanchez will then be able to start his rehab assignment.
"He did all his catching stuff yesterday, hit in the cages," Boone said. "[He] will probably head back to Tampa this weekend with us having the day games and then the off-day before Miami. And if all goes well, hopefully at some point maybe next week in Tampa, he could potentially start a rehab situation in the Gulf Coast League there. Then we will go from there, but all signs are looking well."
Sanchez has yet to run at full speed or hit on the field since going on the DL, but he noted that he has not felt any pain since the week after he sustained the injury.
"I'm feeling better. The work I've been doing with the trainers has been helpful, the work I've been doing in Tampa," Sanchez said. "I think the real test is going to come when I play in a game. If I hit a ground ball and I start pushing myself, I think that's where the real test is going to be."
Boone expects Sanchez's workload to be "heavy" once he's back in pinstripes, with anticipated to serve as backup, catching an "OK amount of games."
"Assuming he's healthy, we're going to be very conscientious with how we build Gary back up and making sure he passes every hurdle," Boone said. "We really challenge him in a lot of different ways, making sure [he has] everything from conditioning to health to probably a little more extended rehab period, so that we can really have him bounce back catching-wise, make sure he's running in the games a handful of times and just being really conscientious, because it has been a recurring situation this year. But I would expect once he's back that he's playing regularly for us."
CC expected to miss just one start
Left-hander took an injection and had his right knee drained on Monday after being placed on the 10-day DL with inflammation. Sabathia has battled pain all season, after having the knee drained early in the season and last receiving a lubricant injection just prior to the All-Star break.
"I feel good. The swelling is out," Sabathia said. "It's probably only going to be one start. I told Boone that I could've probably made my next start and pushed through, but the next one I probably would've been down. I'm just trying to listen to my body and listen to my knee this time and not try to push it at a time that I really don't need to if that makes sense."

Sabathia felt pain during his last two outings, though he recorded a 0.77 ERA and 19 strikeouts in those two starts.
"It's frustrating, just because when I'm out there and my knee is hurting, I'm not even thinking about making a pitch. I'm just trying to not have it hurt," he said. "I'm doing whatever I can to not have it hurt. To go out and still be pitching well, not really locked in on the game, is encouraging, I guess."
will temporarily take Sabathia's spot in the rotation, getting the ball for Wednesday's game against the Rays. Boone went with Cessa over such prospects as Chance Adams and due to Cessa's experience.
"We've seen [Cessa] make some good starts for us so far this year," Boone said. "The stuff's been good. We just feel like he's the best guy to slot in kind of on the fly. This is a guy that's been used to this up-and-down role a little bit the last couple years."
This date in Yankees history
Aug. 14, 1993: On "Reggie Jackson Day" at Yankee Stadium, the slugger's No. 44 was retired.