It’s been 24 hours and there’s still no clarity on New York Yankees pitcher Justin Wilson.
Why is that an issue? Because he was scheduled to undergo an MRI at 2 p.m. on Tuesday and then the team announced a few hours ago that they don’t have “an additional medical update” on the left-hander.
Wilson left Monday night’s game against the Philadelphia Phillies with an apparent shoulder injury after he removed himself from the game.
When manager Aaron Boone spoke to the media afterwards, he revealed that Wilson said he “had a hard time getting loose out there.”
Fan’s can’t say they’re confident when there’s a lag in the diagnosing process, especially since sometimes that may indicate there are inconclusive results, the injury needs a second opinion, or it’s something worse than everyone was anticipating.
You can bet that’s the nervous mindset at the moment since this kind of injury news is all anyone’s used to every single year.
How many times has Boone taken the podium to talk about an injury, say we’ll have an update at a certain time, that update gets delayed, and then we’re hit with something along the lines of a two-month absence or some kind of surgery that requires a lengthy recovery?
It’s especially concerning at the moment because Zack Britton is out for three months and many felt Wilson could fill in and take over as the other late-inning lefty in the bullpen alongside Aroldis Chapman. If Wilson goes down, that means the Yankees will be relying on Lucas Luetge as the next lefty in the ‘pen.
That’s not a knock on Luetge, but it’s just not the situation you want on Opening Day. He hasn’t pitched in MLB since 2015 and missed all of 2018 and 2020. Giving him heavy, high-leverage work from the jump could easily create strain on the rest of the unit.
It was already troubling enough that Wilson arrived late to spring training after getting stuck in Texas during the weather crisis. That set him back with his throwing shortly after he signed his bizarrely structured contract with the Yankees in late February. Now, after a horrific 2.1 innings in spring training (23.14 ERA and 4.71 WHIP), he could already be on the shelf with an injury.
The clock is ticking. If history has told us anything with these kinds of medical updates, we’d caution fans to expect the worst but hope for the best.