Since he injured his knee last week against the Houston Astros, New York Yankeesâ€™ Gio Urshela has been somewhat banged up, in and out of the lineup. He continues to perform at a high level, which is why the Bombers need him more than ever, especially with injuries starting to pile on.
In fact, Urshela opened last nightâ€™s game on the bench, between the trainerâ€™s table and the weight room of the hosts, the Baltimore Orioles.
The Yankeesâ€™ infielder was called upon to pinch-hit in the seventh inning with his team down a couple of runs. He faced Travis Lakins Sr., in what went on to be a nine-pitch at-bat that culminated in a three-run shot that gave the Bombers a lead they would not relinquish.
“Youâ€™ve got to be ready, all the time, from pitch one,â€ Urshela said. â€œI was warming up in the innings before that, just trying to keep my body warm and be ready for every opportunity.â€
The Yankeesâ€™ infielder is still battling knee issues
Urshelaâ€™s knee was swollen in the past few days, but it subsided just enough for him to make that pinch-hit appearance.
â€œOff the bench or not, it was one of those really good at-bats,â€ Yankees manager Aaron Boone told MLB.com. â€œIt was a huge spot in the game, a couple of runners out there. To foul off [five] pitches and then absolutely get into one, it was just a big-time at-bat by a really good player. Iâ€™m glad I had that sitting over there tonight as a weapon.â€
It was Urshelaâ€™s fifth homer of the year, one that was good enough for him to keep a 22-game streak of reaching base alive.
â€œIâ€™m just trying to bring that confidence every single day that I play,â€ Urshela said. â€œToday I felt more comfortable; I did some treatment and all that. I feel a lot better.â€