Brian Cashman called Aaron Judge’s rib fracture a “very unique injury” and one that is “extremely challenging to diagnose,” which helps explain why it took the Yankees so long to determine exactly what was wrong with the right fielder when he experienced pain throughout the spring.
The rib fracture, the Yankees general manager said Thursday, is located near Judge’s shoulder and to make matters worse, Cashman said, it’s in an area with reduced blood flow — which slows the healing process.
That’s why Cashman said he expected Judge to be out until the summer even before the sport was shut down by the coronavirus pandemic in March.
Judge had a significantly different goal when the injury was discovered, saying in March that he expected to be able to play on Opening Day, then scheduled for March 26 in Baltimore.
“When it happened, I always felt we wouldn’t see Judge more likely til the summertime,” Cashman said during a virtual conversation to raise funds for Family Centers’ Emergency Relief Fund. “But Aaron Judge is like most superstar athletes. [They think] they’re invincible and they feel they’ll be back sooner than later.’’