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Around the Empire - Yankees news: 8/15/22

Andrew Benintendi rare Yankee to receive warm welcome in Boston; Jameson Taillon a possible qualifying offer candidate; infielders can get weird with their gloves

Boston Red Sox v New York Yankees Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images

ESPN | Joon Lee: When Johnny Damon and Jacoby Ellsbury returned to Fenway Park after signing with the New York Yankees as free agents, they were met, perhaps unsurprisingly, with boos. Upon his return to Boston, however, Andrew Benintendi was met not with jeers, but with cheers — perhaps in part because the Yankees left fielder did not willingly sign as a free agent with the team, but was acquired in a midseason trade. In the process, the 2018 World Series champion (blegh) became one of the few Yankees to receive a warm welcome in Fenway.

MLB Trade Rumors | Mark Polishuk: It’s never too early to start looking towards the offseason, and this week, MLB Trade Rumors got an early jump by looking at which players are on track to receive a qualifying offer this winter. Among pitchers who will be hitting the market, Yankees starter Jameson Taillon is a borderline candidate to receive a QO, as his strong start to the year has been dragged by a weak second half of the season.

New York Times | James Wagner: Perhaps no truer statement was ever written than, “Baseball players are a quirky and superstitious bunch,” and perhaps nowhere does their superstitious nature shine through more than in how they treat their gloves. For those who enjoy the weirdest parts of the human side of the game, this article is an absolute treat, as we learn how particular infielders and catchers are with their equipment — many infielders won’t let anyone else put theirs on, and Santiago Espinal even sleeps with his — while outfielders like Aaron Judge tend to have a much more casual relationship (and yes, relationship is the right word) with their mitts.

And finally, in some unfortunate injury news, it was revealed last night that Yankees leadoff hitter DJ LeMahieu has been dealing with a “toe/foot” issue which kept him out last night’s game. First mentioned in passing on ESPN’s pregame show, Aaron Boone confirmed the report when speaking to the media after the game.

According to LeMahieu, his toe has actually been bothering him for quite some time; he had a cortisone shot over the All-Star Break, but it has flared up again in recent days.

Hopefully it turns out to be minor, and that the infielder is feeling good as new in the coming days. Although the pitching staff has (rightfully) shouldered much of the blame for the team’s struggles over the last few weeks, the lineup has with growing frequency had nights where they just didn’t bother to show up (like last night). Missing LeMahieu for any stretch of time would be very bad even if the Yankees were at full health, but rings even worse for a team that has been without Giancarlo Stanton and will be without Matt Carpenter.