Yankees’ Aaron Judge still strained by neck injury, Tanaka concern growing, update here

New York Yankees, Aaron Judge
USA Today

With just 10 days before the start of the regular season, the New York Yankees are trying to alleviate themselves of injury. The latest player to go down was Aaron Judge with a stiff neck, and he’s been receiving ample treatment the past two days.

Judge still remains strained by his sore neck, and he is unlikely to be ready for Tuesday’s intrasquad game. Starting pitcher Masahiro Tanaka also remains a question mark as he recovers from concussion symptoms.

”He’s got way more range of motion,” manager Aaron Boone said Monday. ”They’ve gotten a lot of that pain out of there when he turns to the side and things like that.”

The expectation is that judge will return within the next few days, but nothing is cemented just yet. The 2017 AL Rookie of the Year has missed time due to oblique strains, a broken wrist, and a broken rib. Luckily, a majority of his injuries are broken-bone related, meaning it was more freak accidents then muscle issues.

Masahiro Tanaka is working his way back

Boone was confident in Tanaka’s progression, as he has been working on the field lightly as he climbs back from taking a 112 mph Giancarlo Stanton line drive off his head.

”Encouraged but again just also making sure we go slow and smartly with it,” Boone said. ”Obviously he’s not going to be built up very much. I’m kind of a step at a time right now with Masa. … Obviously with an extended roster there’s a little more flexibility there at the start, too, if we have to creatively build him up at some point.”

With the roster being extended from 26 to 30 players, the Yankees are taking it easy with Tanaka to ensure he can play adequately in the long run. Making sure he is 100% healthy and not facing any brain injuries and further symptoms is the right move. The concern is that Masa could miss Opening Day on July 23 and require more time to get into baseball shape since he’s missed the past few games.