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Yankees' Gary Sanchez Day-to-Day with Finger Injury After X-Rays Negative

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistApril 17, 2021

New York Yankees' Gary Sanchez plays against the Boston Red Sox during the ninth inning of a baseball game, Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Boston. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)
Michael Dwyer/Associated Press

New York Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez exited Saturday's game against the Tampa Bay Rays after taking a foul ball off his throwing hand in the fourth inning.

The Yankees announced that X-rays came back negative and diagnosed Sanchez with contusions on his right index and middle fingers. Sanchez is day-to-day.

Sanchez initially stayed in the game and even had another at-bat in the bottom of the frame, flying out to center, but he was replaced by Kyle Higashioka in the fifth inning.

Sanchez had the worst year of his career in 2020. He struck out in 36 percent of his plate appearances, per FanGraphs, and didn't supply enough power to make up for his low contact rate. His .365 slugging percentage was nearly 140 points lower than his career average (.501).

The 28-year-old played just three of the Yankees' seven playoff games, and he told ESPN's Marly Rivera in December he was unsure why he was benched for Higashioka.

While the 2021 season is young, Sanchez is off to a better start, hitting .237 with two home runs and four RBI in 12 games.

The Yankees (5-8) are off to a slow start at the plate, but they have no shortage of firepower with Aaron Judge, DJ LeMahieu, Giancarlo Stanton and Gleyber Torres leading the way.

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They also boast a quality backup catcher in Higashioka, who is hitting .364 with two homers and four RBI in seven games.

Even so, losing a two-time All-Star in Sanchez for any period of time is a negative because of how it impacts New York's depth.