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Around the Empire: Yankees news - 10/20/21

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Aaron Boone signs three-year deal; Jameson Taillon to undergo ankle surgery; DJ LeMahieu core surgery a success; Other injury updates; Brian Cashman closes book on Gleyber Torres shortstop saga

New York Yankees v Boston Red Sox Photo by Omar Rawlings/Getty Images

ESPN | Buster Olney, Associated Press: The Yankees announced yesterday that Aaron Boone will return as manager after signing a new three-year deal with a club option for a fourth. Despite failing to reach the heights of the final season of his predecessor — much less appear in the World Series — all while having a more talented squad at his disposal, the Yankees feel that Boone is still the best man to have at the helm. Brian Cashman praised his “baseball acumen and widespread respect in [the] clubhouse,” while placing responsibility on the players for failing to achieve the ostensible goal of pursuing a World Series ring.

NorthJersey.com | Pete Caldera: Brian Cashman announced that Jameson Taillon would require right ankle surgery, scheduled for October 28th, and that the expected recovery time would be around five months. Taillon initially suffered a partial tendon tear in that ankle on September 7th, and reaggravated it in his September 29th start vs. Toronto. However, that did not stop him from pitching one of the grittier displays on the mound in recent memory — 3.1 scoreless innings in Game 162 against the Rays. Taillon, in his first full season since 2018, went 8-6 in 29 starts, with a 4.30 ERA, 4.43 FIP, and 140 strikeouts in 144.1 innings, and will hope to be ready for spring training 2022.

Yahoo Sports | Danny Abriano: During the same press conference, Cashman relayed that DJ LeMahieu had successfully undergone core surgery to repair a sports hernia, and that the recovery timetable is in the eight week range. The hernia landed LeMahieu on the IL in the final week of the regular season and prevented him from being added to the Wild Card roster. He had a down year relative to his first two in pinstripes — batting .268/.349/.362 with 10 home runs, 57 RBI, a 100 wRC+, and 2.4 fWAR — and the Yankees will hope for a rebound next season. We still have not learned how long LeMahieu was playing with the hernia, so we will never know if the injury was the root cause of his dip in form as opposed to pure regression.

MLB.com | Bryan Hoch: Rounding out the injury news, we received updates on a handful of other players. Luke Voit suffered a bone bruise September 29th in the same knee that required surgery to repair a torn meniscus at the beginning of the 2021 season, though surgery has not been recommend. Clint Frazier continues to experience dizziness and is in constant contact with Yankees medical staff. Aaron Hicks is close to fully recovered from surgery to repair a torn wrist tendon sheath, and should be ready to go for Opening Day. Tim Locastro is progressing in recovery following surgery to repair a torn ACL, and could be ready at the start of next season. Finally, Darren O’Day has a player option for next season, but could retire after undergoing season-ending hamstring surgery in July.

New York Post | Dan Martin: It appears the Gleyber Torres shortstop experiment is officially over. Cashman admitted that it was a mistake to play Torres at short, and that he is “best served at second base.” He also revealed that shortstop would be high atop the list of needs to be addressed this offseason. This winter features the best shortstop free agency class in years, with the likes of Carlos Correa, Corey Seager, Trevor Story, Marcus Semien, and Javier Báez all hitting the market. Having reset their luxury tax offender rate by dipping below the Competitive Balance Tax threshold of $210 million this past season, the Yankees are in prime position to make an impact signing, assuming owner Hal Steinbrenner approves increasing payroll.