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Brett Gardner could rejoin Yankees as pinch-runner

Sep 15, 2012, 3:29 PM EDT

Brett Gardner Getty Getty Images

When Brett Gardner underwent surgery on his right elbow in late July, it was thought that he would miss the rest of the season. However, it’s now possible that he could rejoin the Yankees down the stretch, albeit in a limited capacity.

Gardner participated in bunting drills on the field and ran the bases this afternoon at Yankee Stadium, after which Yankees manager Joe Girardi told Mike Mazzeo of ESPN New York that the speedy outfielder could be activated as a pinch-runner.

“This is a guy that we don’t expect to be able to hit for us,” Girardi said, “but is it possible that he could do some other things? Yes.”

Gardner is scheduled to run the bases again tomorrow before being re-evaluated, but his speed would come in for the Bombers, who currently rank 26th in the majors with 73 stolen bases. Gardner tied for the American League lead with 49 stolen bases last year and had 47 in 2010.

  1. bigharold - Sep 15, 2012 at 3:36 PM

    If he can’t swing a bat the Yankees can’t have him on the playoff roster so whats the point>?

    Nunez could be the designated runner, PH and DH. Just as long as Girardi glues his glove to the bench cause defensively he needs work.

    • dondada10 - Sep 15, 2012 at 3:41 PM

      Keep in mind that a team doesn’t need 5 starters in the playoffs, which opens up bench spots for specialists, like what Gardner would be.

      Also keep in mind that the Yanks might just miss the playoffs all together.

      • henryd3rd - Sep 16, 2012 at 6:33 AM

        Ouch! This is s very real possibility with the new wild card set up. Or the Yankees might find themselves involved in that one game playoff. Either way as a Yankee fan I am very worried.

        Having said that 27 and counting

    • pisano - Sep 16, 2012 at 12:52 AM

      big….!00% on, I think Nunez is faster than Gardner anyway, also it would be the Yankees luck that he’d get injured stealing a base and wouldn’t be ready for spring training. They are going to need an outfielder or two as I don’t think they’ll want Swisher back, he thinks he’s going to break the bank as a free agent.

      • tigertigerwoodsyall - Sep 16, 2012 at 10:40 AM

        Faster than Gardner? Doubt it. Nunez is also a dumb base runner. The guy isn’t a bad player, but he has mental lapses that equal his on defensive ones.

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