Brett Gardner’s status was very much in doubt this week as he paid visits to both Dr. James Andrews and Dr. Timothy Kremchek, but the Yankees actually got some good news on his nagging right elbow injury.
According to Chad Jennings of the Journal News, the doctors have diagnosed Gardner with an elbow muscle strain, a bone bruise and joint inflammation. Surgery will not be necessary, as the doctors agreed the injury simply hasn’t healed yet. Kremchek administered a PRP (platelet-rich plasma) and cortisone shot today and the speedy left fielder will rest for 3-4 weeks and wear an elbow brace.
Gardner has been sidelined since April 17 due to the injury and has already been shut down from two rehab assignments. Further setbacks are possible, but the timeline presented by Andrews and Kremchek should allow the Yankees to get a good read on his status well ahead of next month’s trade deadline.
CSN Philly’s Jim Salisbury reports that Phillies outfielder Nick Williams has been working out daily with free agent starter Jake Arrieta in Austin. The right-hander, who won the 2015 National League Cy Young Award, still remains teamless with spring training less than a month away. Williams has been trying to sell Arrieta on joining the Phillies.
Williams said of Arrieta, “He loves it here [Austin]. He has told me he likes working with young guys. I’m like, ‘All right, come on up.’ But I’m not writing the check. I don’t know what he wants. I don’t really dig into that because I’m not really in his position.”
On GM Matt Klentak’s hunt for pitching help, new manager Gabe Kapler said, “The pursuit is very real. I have a lot of trust that we’ll either go in [to spring training] with a new toy or we will pass on the opportunity because we’re better off giving this collection of pitchers a really healthy look because we thought that we could go acquire that piece a little bit later on this season or in the offseason next year.”
Arrieta, who turns 32 years old in March, went 14-10 with a 3.53 ERA and a 163/55 K/BB ratio in 168 1/3 innings last season with the Cubs. The Cubs, Cardinals, and Brewers have been linked to Arrieta this month.
Presently, the Phillies’ starting rotation figures to include Aaron Nola, Jerad Eickhoff, and Vince Velasquez along with some combination of Nick Pivetta, Ben Lively, Zach Eflin, Mark Leiter, and Jake Thompson. Arrieta would certainly amount to a big upgrade in the starting rotation and could make the Phillies a more attractive landing spot for Bryce Harper or Manny Machado, who become free agents after the 2018 campaign. The Phillies are expected to be in the mix for either or both players.