Aaron Boone officially begins Yankees injury spin cycle early with latest update

The injury blows just keep on coming for the New York Yankees.

Mar 4, 2024; Jupiter, Florida, USA; New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone (17) looks on against the
Mar 4, 2024; Jupiter, Florida, USA; New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone (17) looks on against the / Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Things just keep getting worse for the New York Yankees. Spring Training took a brutal turn for the Yankees, as Gerrit Cole, the reigning AL Cy Young winner, suffered an elbow injury. The hope is that the right-hander will only miss the first month or two of the regular season, but who knows at this point?

As if Cole being out wasn't bad enough, the Yankees have been dealing with other injury woes. Tommy Kahnle is another Yankees player likely to begin the year on the IL. Aaron Judge has been dealing with injury woes of his own, although he hopes to play on Opening Day. Now, there's another injured Yankee.

Infielder DJ LeMahieu has joined the long list of injured Yankees players as he suffered what Aaron Boone described as "a pretty significant bone bruise" on his right foot. As of now, it's unclear as to whether LeMahieu can be ready for Opening Day.

DJ LeMahieu might join lengthy list of Yankees player on IL when Opening Day arrives

LeMahieu was an X-Factor of sorts for the Yankees this season. He was slated to hit at the top of the order in front of the dynamic duo of Juan Soto and Aaron Judge. He was set to see plenty of pitches to hit when batting in front of Soto and Judge and had tons of responsibility on his shoulders to get on base so New York could score as much as possible. Now, that's up in the air.

LeMahieu, a player who finished in the top four of AL MVP balloting in both 2019 and 2020, was looking to bounce back coming off of his worst season with the Yankees. The 35-year-old slashed .243/.327/.390 with 15 home runs and 44 RBI in 136 games played. He wasn't great, but LeMahieu being a career .292 hitter gave Yankees fans reason to believe that he'd bounce back if healthy. This puts a crimp in those hopes.

If LeMahieu has to begin the year on the IL, that raises a whole bunch of questions. Who will replace him in the leadoff spot? The Yankees have players like Alex Verdugo, Gleyber Torres, and Anthony Volpe who have done that before, it'd make sense for one of them to be handed the keys there.

The other question is who will replace LeMahieu in the infield? What makes this injury worse is their presumed backup infielder, Oswald Peraza, is injured as well. Perhaps Oswaldo Cabrera will step in as their everyday third baseman. Maybe the Yankees will go out and sign a free agent.

Losing LeMahieu isn't as damaging as losing Judge or Soto, but it's not a nothing injury. LeMahieu, when right, is an on-base machine and a Gold Glover in the infield.