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.
The Orioles singlehandedly kept the rumor mill churning this weekend. MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports that the club is interested in making a play for free agent right-hander Lance Lynn, adding him to a list of potential candidates that also includes free agent righty Alex Cobb. The two are expected to command similar contracts in free agency, but Morosi notes that the Orioles may prefer Cobb based on his familiarity with the AL East.
Lynn, 30, is two years removed from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. Despite missing the 2016 season, he bounced back with a respectable 11-8 record in 33 starts and complemented his efforts with a 3.43 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 7.4 SO/9 over 186 1/3 innings for the 2017 Cardinals. He lost several days with a blister on his pitching hand in early September, but managed to avoid any major injuries and can reasonably be expected to shoulder another heavy workload in 2018.
Lynn may not be the Orioles’ first choice to beef up their starting rotation, but there’s no doubt that he’ll be in high demand as one of very few viable starters on the market this winter. The veteran righty rejected his one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Cardinals on Thursday and will likely be seeking a multi-year contract, one that Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch estimates around five years and $100+ million. If the Orioles are willing to bite that bullet, they’ll still need to compensate the Cardinals with their third pick in next year’s draft.