New York Yankees left-hander Carlos Rodón will receive an injection in his troublesome back early next week, manager Aaron Boone told reporters Friday (per The Athletic). Rodón was shut down with a forearm injury following his first spring training start, and he has since been slowed by a back issue that has halted his throwing program.
"I wouldn't be me if I didn't (push the Yankees to let me throw anyway)," Rodón told reporters Friday (per the New York Post). "It's hard. I wanted to throw today, I wanted to throw yesterday. But that's why we have the training staff we do have so I don't do something stupid and make something worse."
Rodón, 30, has a very long injury history, though it is almost all shoulder and elbow injuries. This is the first time his back has acted up, or at least enough to be made public. Considering it's already early May and Rodón will have to go through what amounts to a full spring training to get ready, he's not likely to join the Yankees until the middle of June at the earliest.
"I can't put a timeline on anything. I'll get this injection and I want to throw as soon as I can," Rodón said (per MLB.com), adding he's been told his back issue is chronic. He added he has no pain, only tightness in his back.
Signed to a six-year contract worth $162 million this past offseason, Rodón is coming off the best season of his career, during which he set new career highs in starts (31) and innings (178). He was an All-Star the last two seasons and finished in the top six of the Cy Young voting both years. When healthy, Rodón has shown he can pitch at the top of the rotation.
The Yankees have been hammered by injuries this year. Even with Harrison Bader returning earlier this week, they're still without Josh Donaldson (hamstring), Aaron Judge (hip), Frankie Montas (shoulder), Luis Severino (lat), Giancarlo Stanton (hamstring), and a small army of relievers in addition to Rodón. Judge is expected back early next week.
Domingo Germán, Clarke Schmidt, and rookie Jhony Brito have subbed in alongside Gerrit Cole and Nestor Cortes in the rotation with Montas, Rodón, and Severino out. Despite those injuries, the Yankees rank seventh among the 30 teams with 3.0 WAR from their starters.
At 17-15, the Yankees are in last place in the stacked AL East..