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Aaron Judge headed to IL with toe contusion/sprain

The Yankees will be without their MVP for at least a week.

New York Yankees v Los Angeles Dodgers Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

Never, ever, ever try hard.

Aaron Judge’s running catch at Dodger Stadium over the weekend may have been a real highlight, but it’s also going to cost the game’s best player some IL time. Immediately after Tuesday’s loss to the White Sox, Aaron Boone added injury to insult by revealing Judge would go to the IL with a contusion and ligament sprain in his toe.

That toe, of course, slammed into exposed concrete by the Dodgers’ bullpen. That oversight will cost the Yankees at least another week without their best player. If there’s a silver lining here, it’s that Judge hasn’t appeared in a game since Saturday, so the IL stint can be retroactive. Should this be a relatively simple injury, Judge can take advantage of that retro time and bank the games he’s already missed. No timeline has been set just yet for his return, though.

YES Network’s Meredith Marakovits reported that Judge had a PRP shot during the game, so hopefully that will help him on the road back. In the meantime, given how often he’s popped back onto the MLB roster at various points so far after his topsy-turvy April, the odds seem good that Franchy Cordero will once again return.

I’m not going to file this into the column of “Judge is injury prone,” but it is perhaps illustrative of why guys like Ronald Acuña Jr. and Bryce Harper have largely stopped trying in the outfield. These kinds of players are just so valuable at the plate that the runs they cede defensively are made up tenfold by the runs they produce by being healthy and at the plate. It’s impossible to tell a pro athlete not to try hard, but maybe Judge should have gone less than 100 mph trying to make that play.

As always, the Yankee lineup looks considerably thinner without Judge in it, but for now, we’re going to have to live with it—just as we did when he missed 10 games earlier this year with a minor hip injury. Hopefully the “Next Man Up” spirit is still thriving in the New York clubhouse.