Yankees DH and backup 1B Edwin Encarnacion heads to the IL after he suffered a broken hand against the Boston Red Sox after Josh Smith hit him with a 87 mph slider.
Encarnacion suffered a hairline fracture and will miss at least three weeks and possibly more. The horror series Bronx ER claimed its 25th victim with Encarnacion.
“I hope no more than three weeks,” said Encarnacion. “We’ll see. They don’t tell me exactly.”
Encarnacion, 36, had been in the middle of his hottest streak of the season hitting .333 with 5 home runs over his previous 20 games. Overall this season with the Mariners and Yankees, Encarnacion slugged 30 home runs this season before the broken hand.
The Yankees are now in search of a steady DH until Giancarlo Stanton returns from the IL. His timeline is unknown.
The Yankees called up rookie Mike Ford from AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre as the backup first basemen. Ford, 26, languished in the minor leagues the last couple of seasons. Ford hit .303 in AAA and also currently leads all Yankees minor leaguers with 23 home runs. The Bronx Bombers could use his big bat.
Parrot Man Down, Next Man Up
As late as last weekend, Encarnacion handled DH and third-string 1B duties behind Luke Voit and DJ LeMahieu. When Luke Voit went on the IL with a sports hernia, Encarnacion moved into the backup role. However, when DJ LeMahieu got sidelined with a minor groin injury, Encarnacion started at first base and Gio Urshela moved into the emergency backup role.
Sadly, Edwin Encarnacion is the latest unlucky member of the Yankees to fall under the injury hex. He took his turn to head to the IL. This time, it’s a broken hand for Encarnacion.
The Yankees have been without a backup 1B after Greg Bird went on the IL for an indefinite amount of time with a foot injury. Bird is still out with a torn plantar fasciitis with an unknown return date.
The Yankees acquired Encarnacion in a trade with the Seattle Mariners to bulk up the middle of the lineup. With Giancarlo Stanton on the IL with numerous injuries, the Yankees struggled in the DH role. Encarnacion added firepower and a veteran presence in the locker room. Plus the phantom parrot is just funny as heck. Yankees fans in NYC quickly embraced Encarnacion’s eccentrics including the way he runs around the bases after he hits a home run with an invisible parrot rest of his arm.
“The thing about our team is that we keep moving forward,” said OF Mike Tauchman. “One of the greatest strengths of this team is the ability to overcome adversity and just keep pushing forward.”
According to William Hill, the NY Yankees (71-39) are currently 5/1 odds to win the World Series even with Encarnacion on the IL.