Brett Gardner’s rehab assignment pushed back due to rainout

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UPDATE: Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News reports that Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre was rained out tonight, so Gardner won’t begin his rehab assignment until tomorrow.

Gardner is expected to play two rehab games, so he won’t rejoin the Yankees until Thursday at the earliest.

12:48 PM: Brett Gardner wasn’t ready to come off the disabled list when eligible last week, but the Yankees left fielder is very close to returning from an elbow injury.

Wallace Matthews of ESPN New York reports that Gardner will begin a minor-league rehab assignment tonight at Triple-A, with manager Joe Girardi indicating that he may only need 2-3 games there before rejoining the Yankees’ lineup.

Gardner has been out since April 18 and his absence combined with Nick Swisher also getting hurt has led to the Yankees turning to the likes of Eduardo Nunez, Jayson Nix, and DeWayne Wise in the outfield corners.

Report: Welington Castillo to be suspended 80 games for violating Joint Drug Agreement

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Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic confirms a report from journalist Américo Celado that White Sox catcher Welington Castillo will be suspended 80 games for violating baseball’s Joint Drug Agreement. Castillo was believed to have used a steroid, but according to Rosenthal, the substance was not a steroid. More details should come on Thursday.

Castillo, 31, entered Wednesday’s action batting .270/.314/.477 with six home runs and 15 RBI in 118 plate appearances. He has gotten the bulk of the work behind the plate, backed up by Omar Narváez.

Castillo’s absence will likely prompt the White Sox to call up Kevan Smith from Triple-A Charlotte. Smith battled an ankle injury in March and April, so he got a late start to the season. In 102 PA at Triple-A, he has hit .283/.343/.457.