YES Network.com

Didi Gregorius out indefinitely with small cartilage tear in right wrist

NEW YORK - Yankees shortstop Didi Gregorius has a small cartilage tear in his right wrist, an injury he suffered during his slide into home plate to score the game-winning, and playoff berth-clinching, run in Saturday's Yankees win over the Orioles.

"When I slid into home plate my right hand got stuck in a hole or something, and then it came back forward," Gregorius explained after Sunday's game, moments after the injury was revealed by manager Aaron Boone. "When we were celebrating, everything was fine, and when I went home it was fine, but I woke up this morning and it wasn't feeling good, so we came up here and did an MRI."

That MRI revealed a small tear, and Gregorius had a cortisone shot that, according to the shortstop, had already made the issue "feel better" hours later, with a level of pain that is "just soreness." Didi will be evaluated further "in a few days" according to Boone, but that said, even though both Gregorius and the team are optimistic he will play again before the end of the regular season, nothing is a given.

"I think there's a real possibility we do get him back, but also possibility we don't," Boone said. "We'll know a lot more in a few days when we see how the wrist responds to the cortisone shot; a lot of times, (an injury like this) can respond the right way to the cortisone, but that's an unknown right now."

Added Didi: "My level of optimism is still high. I have more range of motion in there now since I got the shot, so we're feeling good, but we're just going to take it day-to-day; they say that some players play through things like this, so we'll see how it goes, and if I feel better, I'll be back in there."

According to a sports medicine orthopedist consulted by YESNetwork.com, a small cartilage tear means that it is possible that Gregorius' future could simply be a matter of playing through pain, but it is also possible that the tear could limit both his range of motion and strength, and eventually require arthroscopic surgery.

Gregorius said the latter possibility hadn't been discussed yet, and, of course, both he and the Yankees hope the former is the path he ends up taking.

"It's real frustrating, because I'm not playing," Gregorius said. "But, like I said, we're going to take it day-by-day. I haven't tried to do anything yet, so we have to wait and hope rest helps."

Whether it's one day or the rest of the season, though, losing a player who is arguably their most complete on both sides of the ball will be a big blow for the Yankees.

"Didi's a great player, and obviously everyone in this room understands how important he is to our team," Boone said. "He's an anchor defensively in the infield, and you see what he brings from the left side at the plate. Hopefully we'll get some good news here in a few days.

Added catcher Gary Sanchez: "Losing a player of his caliber is definitely going to affect us. But, hopefully we can get him back soon. Until then, it's upon us to pick up and try to get the job done."

For now, the Yankees, who are fully healthy (or, at least, were for a few days), do have several options for their middle infield in Didi's absence.

"We can mix and match a little, but we'll cross those bridges when we have to," Boone said. "Hech (Adeiny Hechavarria) would certainly factor in big time, but we can slide Gleyber (Torres) over if we need too, as well, to go with a different look."