Aaron Judge has been diagnosed with a stress fracture in his ribs, Aaron Boone announced today. The star outfielder has undergone a battery of tests over the past two weeks as the organization tried to figure out what the cause of his shoulder and pectoral pain was, and now we know. Judge will be shut down for at least two more weeks of rest, and the team has not ruled out surgery at this time.
This adds one more name to an already star-studded injured list, as Judge will join Luis Severino and James Paxton on the early season shelf. It’s still possible Judge could make the Opening Day roster — the Yankees take on Baltimore to start the season in 20 days — however it’s unlikely given the need to both recover and catch up to game speed.
So the good news is, the Yankees know what’s wrong with the face of the team. The bad news is it seems very unclear just how much of a setback this injury will be for Judge, who has now effectively been ruled out for any meaningful spring training tuning-up. With Aaron Hicks also expected to miss several months while recovering from Tommy John surgery, and Giancarlo Stanton also dealing with injury in Tampa, the Yankee outfield depth pieces will be the main focus of the team for the immediate future.