Did Josh Donaldson’s Yankees career just end with latest IL trip?

Josh Donaldson is back on the injured list. Will he be back with the Yankees when healthy?

Jul 7, 2023; Bronx, New York, USA; New York Yankees third baseman Josh Donaldson (28) react after
Jul 7, 2023; Bronx, New York, USA; New York Yankees third baseman Josh Donaldson (28) react after / Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
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For reasons fans cannot comprehend, the New York Yankees have bypassed myriad opportunities this season to pull the plug on Josh Donaldson.

It wasn't long ago that fans believed a DFA announcement was imminent after a meeting between Donaldson and Aaron Boone forced the manager to be late to his pre-game presser. Ultimately, though, Boone revealed he and the struggling vet merely had an "important conversation," presumably about his poor performance and possible playing time moving forward.

Despite being a mainstay in the lineup, Donaldson's performance hasn't improved. The cries for his departure haven't gone anywhere, and they're only going to grow louder -- if that's even possible -- after his latest injury setback.

The Yankees announced Donaldson is headed to the 10-day injured list with a calf strain after he limped down the first base line during Saturday's win in Colorado.

Oswald Peraza is back in the bigs after tearing it up at Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

Is Josh Donaldson's Yankees career over after latest injury?

Fitting the injury happened in the same game Donaldson batted cleanup and was the Yankees designated hitter, right? Saturday's lineup sent the fan base into a frenzy on social media, and rightfully so given Donaldson was slashing .147/.233/.451 with 15 RBI and 32 strikeouts in 116 plate appearances.

His averaged dropped to .142 after an 0-for-4 showing on Saturday. This came after Donaldson batted fifth Friday and went 0-for-3 with a walk.

The Yankees have lost 5 of their last 7 games and dropped to a tie with the Red Sox for last place in the AL East.

It'd be a different story if New York was churning out wins without Aaron Judge, but Donaldson has done nothing to help the cause. Playing a solid third base can only do so much, and the Yankees have multiple players (who are making a lot less than Donaldson) who can do a job at the hot corner and other things to impact winning.

Even if Peraza labors after a longer-than-expected stint at Triple-A, Yankees fans likely would rather see him struggle than Donaldson continue to get the lion's share of starts.

Saturday should be the last fans see of Donaldson in pinstripes, but the organization has stood by the former AL MVP all season despite continuous horrid play so it's really anyone's guess what happens by the time he's recovered from his latest soft-tissue injury.

If Yankees fans had it their way, Donaldson would be shut down for the rest of the season or simply designated for assignment.