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Aaron Boone pines for Aaron Judge’s return to Yankees’ lineup

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Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge has been out since late July due to a fractured wrist suffered when he was hit by a fastball from Royals pitcher Jakob Junis. Judge has taken longer than expected to recover from the injury and his absence has been felt. The Yankees have gone a measly 25-18 (.581) compared to 65-36 (.644) when he was healthy. Tongue planted firmly in cheek with the “measly” comment, of course.

Judge is missed so much that, much like a middle schooler writing their and their crush’s initial inside a heart in the margin of their science notes, manager Aaron Boone longingly writes Judge’s name in the lineup card at night, MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch reports. Boone said, “I talk to him and sometimes at night I’ll write his name in the lineup when I’m screwing around, for fun.”

Judge took on-field batting practice on Monday and will do so again on Tuesday. Per Hoch, Boone said, “We have a little bit of an idea of timeline but I’d rather it continue to unfold every day. He’ll hit again tomorrow. I think the work is pretty extensive hopefully over the weekend. We’ll probably have a decision of how we’re going to go about things.”

Assuming Judge is able to return before the end of the regular season, he’ll resume with a .285/.398/.548 batting line along with 26 home runs and 61 RBI in 447 plate appearances. The Yankees entered Tuesday’s action trailing the first-place Red Sox by eight games in the AL East and holding the first of two Wild Card slots.

Mets sign Ervin Santana to a minor league deal

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The Mets have signed pitcher Ervin Santana to a minor league deal.

Santana was most recently with the White Sox who designated him for assignment and subsequently released him in late April. It was a earned release, as he allowed 14 runs on 19 hits and six walks with five strikeouts over 13.1 innings before being cut. He only made five starts with the Twins in 2018 due to a an injury, but he was an All-Star in 2017 so why not kick the tires?

Santana will report to extended spring training to kick off the rust. Your guess is as a good as mine as to when or if he’ll pitch in New York this year.