Yankees' Giancarlo Stanton Unlikely for Opening Day After Suffering Calf Injury

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistFebruary 26, 2020

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - OCTOBER 05: Giancarlo Stanton #27 of the New York Yankees hits a sacrifice fly to score Aaron Judge #99 in the third inning of game two of the American League Division Series at Yankee Stadium on October 05, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

New York Yankees outfielder Giancarlo Stanton suffered a Grade 1 calf strain that has made it seem unlikely he will be ready for Opening Day, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post.

"He will be down a bit," manager Aaron Boone said of the outfielder Wednesday.

It could represent another key injury for the Yankees after reports Tuesday that starter Luis Severino would require Tommy John surgery, per ESPN.

Stanton is one of MLB's most dangerous sluggers. He entered 2019 with eight consecutive seasons with at least 20 home runs, including a career-best 59 longballs with the Miami Marlins in 2017, and he posted 38 homers during his first season with the Yanks in 2018.

The 30-year-old was limited to just 18 appearances during the 2019 regular season because of biceps, shoulder and knee injuries. He returned in time for the start of the playoffs but suffered a right quad strain in Game 1 of the ALCS against the Houston Astros.

He was expected to serve as the club's primary designated hitter for 2020, but the Yanks could use his absence to get other players a half-day off by serving as the DH. In turn, the extra playing time would be split among multiple bench players, led by Mike Ford and Miguel Andujar.

All told, New York features one of the league's most well-rounded rosters, including a lineup that can produce damage from all nine spots in the order. So the club can overcome a short-term absence to Stanton, but he's key to their championship hopes.

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