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Around the Empire: Yankees news 9/8/18

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Aaron Judge’s rehab continues to advance; Some suggestions on how the Yankees can get back on their feet; McCutchen could spell Gardner in left; The Yankees are still barely on pace with the home run record

Toronto Blue Jays v New York Yankees
Get back soon, large baseball boy
Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

Newsday | Erik Boland: It’s no secret that the Yankees are missing their star outfielder, Aaron Judge. Things were looking worrisome when the original estimate for his return passed and Judge hadn’t even picked up a bat yet. The slugger has recently begun working on his swing without pain, however, and took his rehab to the next step yesterday by participating in outdoors batting activities.

New York Post | George A. King III: The Yankees haven’t played their best baseball recently. They’ve lost six of their last ten games entering the Seattle series, and manager Aaron Boone mentioned that the team needs to find its consistency quickly. King provides four solutions for getting the Yankees back on the right track, including locking Brett Gardner into the leadoff slot, setting up the rotation to provide options other than Luis Severino for the Wild Card Game, skipping Lance Lynn starts whenever possible, and making sure Gary Sanchez and Sevy don’t pair up for the remainder of the season.

NJ.com | Brendan Kuty: Speaking of Gardner, the veteran outfielder could be splitting time in left field down the stretch. With Judge’s return approaching, the Yankees will have to find at-bats for Andrew McCutchen, and one possibility is having him soak in some innings in left. McCutchen hasn’t played left since 2009 down in the minor leagues, but the Yankees advised him to prepare for the possibility when they acquired him at the waiver deadline.

Cut4 | Jordan Shusterman: The 2018 Yankees have hit a lot of home runs, and they’ve been hitting them throughout the year. They were on pace to eclipse the single-season home run record earlier in the year, but the various injuries they’ve sustained have thrown off the path a bit. With Sanchez and Didi Gregorius returning and Judge closer, the projections have them just on the mark of the Seattle Mariner’s 21-year-old record.