Yankees injury tracker: Gary Sanchez working his way back, plus an update on every player on the IL

If you were to simply look at the AL East standings with no context, you might think that it has been a breeze this season in the Bronx. The Yankees have won their first division title since 2012.

But context is important when discussing these 2019 New York Yankees, especially because their success is made all the more impressive when you consider some of the hurdles they've had to leap over since Opening Day. New York has been forced to overcome injuries and absences from a plethora of players -- often key pieces -- all season long, and all the while they've rarely missed a beat. 

In total, the Yanks have seen a record 29 different players hit the injured list this season -- more than an entire roster of players who have served a stint on the IL! There have been 37 total stints on the IL for Yankees players this year, an absolutely preposterous number for a team that has spent most of the year in first place. 

This Yankees team has done a tremendous job of sticking to a "next man up" mentality, refusing to throw in the towel when some of their more important pieces have been hit by the health bug. Instead, some unexpected names have emerged and become improbable contributors as they've found success in the opportunities that injuries have provided to them.

And they'll need to continue to prove they're a deep, resilient team because they're certainly not out of the woods yet. After a first half in which they survived absences from a huge collection of key pieces, including but not limited to Giancarlo Stanton, Luis Severino, Dellin Betances and Aaron Judge, the Yankees are still bogged down with a large list of injured players. 

Let's take a look at which New York players are currently out of action and when they're due to return down the stretch as the playoffs inch closer.

Still rehabbing

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Giancarlo Stanton NYY • LF • 27
BA.270
R4
HR1
RBI7
SB0

Status: Active but limited in return from shoulder injury
Expected return: He's back

The big man has missed most of the season, but he returned from the injured list earlier this week. He's yet to play a full game in the field, though. Aaron Boone told reporters Friday that Stanton would play six or seven innings in the field and take three at-bats as he's eased back in. 

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Edwin Encarnacion NYY • DH • 30
BA.244
R81
HR34
RBI86
SB0

Status: Out with oblique injury
Expected return: Upcoming road trip

Encarnacion hasn't played since Sept. 12 due to an oblique injury but he's now taking dry swings and the Yankees say they expect him to play on the season's final road trip, which is Tuesday through Sunday. 

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Gary Sanchez NYY • C • 24
BA.233
R62
HR34
RBI77
SB0

Status: Left groin tightness (10-day IL)
Expected Return: Unknown

Sanchez hasn't played since Sept. 12 due to tightness in his left groin. For now, he is out indefinitely and it's unknown when he'll make his return to the starting lineup. Friday, the Yankees told reporters that Sanchez is ahead of Edwin Encarnacion in his recovery, but they are optimistic he'll be back. 

Jake Barrett RP •
ERA14.73
WHIP2.18
IP3.2
BB2
K4

Status: Elbow inflammation (60-day IL)
Expected Return: Unknown

Barrett has resumed playing catch but the Yankees have not announced a timetable for him to throw off the mound or rejoin the team.

Jonathan Holder RP •
ERA6.31
WHIP1.31
IP41.1
BB11
K46

Status: Shoulder inflammation (60-day IL)
Expected Return: Late September

Holder is expected to begin a throwing program soon and could rejoin the Yankees before the end of the season. He admitted to pitching through shoulder discomfort for some time before being shut down.

Aaron Hicks CF •
BA.235
R41
HR12
RBI36
SB1

Status: Flexor strain (10-day IL)
Expected Return: Unknown

Hicks suffered a setback during his rehab, and has been unable to resume throwing. For now, Hicks will avoid Tommy John surgery and continue the rest-and-rehab method, but it's unlikely that the outfielder will play again this season.

Done for season

Miguel Andujar DH •
BA.128
R1
HR0
RBI1
SB0

Status: Torn labrum (60-day IL)
Expected Return: Next season

Andujar had season-ending shoulder surgery in May. He is set to begin a throwing program Monday and is expected to be 100 percent ready to go for spring training 2020.

Greg Bird 1B •
BA.171
R6
HR1
RBI1
SB0

Status: Torn plantar fascia (60-day IL)
Expected Return: Unknown

As of the team's most recent update late last month, Bird is still in rehab mode and has not yet resumed baseball activities. He is presumed done for the season.

Jacoby Ellsbury CF •
2019 StatusHas not played

Status: Hip surgery (60-day IL)
Expected Return: Unknown

Ellsbury has been slowed by various maladies during his hip surgery rehab, including plantar fasciitis. It's presumed he's done for the year. Ellsbury has not played since the 2017 ALCS.

David Hale RP •
ERA2.89
WHIP1.15
IP37.1
BB6
K22

Status: Lumbar spine strain (60-day IL)
Expected Return: Next season

Hale suffered a knee injury while rehabbing his back injury and required a cortisone shot. He was recently transferred to the 60-day IL and is not eligible to be activated until after the regular season, so he's done for the year.

Mike Tauchman LF •
BA.277
R46
HR13
RBI47
SB6

Status: Grade 2 calf strain (10-day IL)
Expected Return: Six-to-eight weeks, season likely over

Tauchman was placed on the 10-day injured list with a Grade 2 left calf strain, and the accompany six-to-eight weeks recovery timetable ends Tauchman's regular season and likely the postseason as well.

Pete Blackburn is from Boston, so there's a good chance you don't like him already. He has been a writer at CBS Sports since 2017 and usually aims to take a humorous and light-hearted approach to the often... Full Bio

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