The moment that New York Yankees starting pitcher Corey Kluber felt shoulder tightness, everybody held their breath. Just a week ago, Kluber completed the first no-hitter of his career and the first since 1999 for the Yankees. Funny enough, David Cone was the last starter to complete the act donning the pinstripes, but now the Yankees are facing a potential problem in the starting rotation as their number two will likely be out for a period of time.
Kluber has dealt with a variety of injuries in the past, including a shoulder issue on that same arm last year that was more centralized. This season, he currently hosts a 3.04 ERA, but his pitches were deteriorating quickly against Toronto on Tuesday before he allowed two runs.
Luckily, Kluber feels confident that this injury is nothing too serious, indicating that he tried to work through it and get the adrenaline pumping, but he could feel discomfort in the area.
â€œLast year, it was more localized to one specific area,â€ Kluber said. â€œThis just kind of feels more in general to me. I canâ€™t really pinpoint one area where anything was painful or anything like that. I felt like I had trouble getting it going, a fatigued feeling.â€
The Yankees are preparing to diagnose the issues through an MRI, but the team feels confident that the injury contains no structural damage and simply could be fatigue-related. After all, he did pitch an entire game last week at 35 years old, so he simply couldâ€™ve just needed a bit more time to rest and recuperate.
Nonetheless, Kluber has established himself as the partner in crime with Gerrit Cole as the ace, something the Yankees have lack significantly over the past few seasons. The team let Masahiro Tanaka go in free agency this past offseason, electing to go with Kluber on a one-year, $11 million deal. So far, that decision seems to be panning out for the better, but health continues to remain an issue for a team that is struggling at multiple positions.
Luckily, they have plenty of depth in the starting rotation, as they could ask young Dominican Republic native Deivi Garcia to make the jump and fill a spot at the back end of the rotation. Hopefully, Kluber wonâ€™t be out for too much time; they have the players necessary to supplement his loss while he rehabilitates.