The New York Yankees have been beset by injuries in 2023, but will welcome back one of their starters on Tuesday when Harrison Bader makes his season debut against the Cleveland Guardians.
Wait ... players can come back? That's allowed? Oh, it's over for you folks. Game-changer.
Bader will, hopefully, be joined by Aaron Judge when his short stint on the IL is set to expire on May 8 for a home series against the Oakland Athletics.
Tuesday's lineup features Bader batting fifth and playing center, a less-than-ideal place in the lineup for a player whose offensive profile isn't predicated on power. Under the circumstances, though? You understand what the Yanks are going for.
Yankees Lineup, May 2 vs Cleveland Guardians: Is Harrison Bader playing?
Bader will not be joined by left fielder Jake Bauers, unfortunately. The Yankees promoted Bauers on Saturday to man left and spark the team, but on a sliding catch to end the top of the first, he slammed his knee into the wall in Texas and was removed from the contest.
Bauers has undergone a clean MRI since the incident, and the swelling in his knee has gone down to the point where he avoided an IL stint of his own. He'll have to keep waiting for his first at-bat in a Yankee uniform, though, and will presumably be available off the bench on Tuesday.
Aaron Hicks will start and bat ninth in his stead, despite Aaron Boone's best efforts to use the lightning rod outfielder only in road games. He'll have a shot at redemption after ending Monday night's stunning loss with a swinging strikeout against Emmanuel Clase.