Now the All-Star outfielder needs surgery, and his status for the stretch run of the season and the playoffs is unclear. Manager Aaron Boone told reporters on Sunday that testing revealed that Benintendi sustained a broken hook of the hamate bone in his right hand. He suffered the injury during Friday's 9-0 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays while swinging during the third inning.
Initial X-rays didn't reveal the break, but a CT scan over the weekend did. Benintendi needs surgery to repair the break. He's scheduled to meet with specialists on Monday to further evaluate the injury and treatment plan.
“I’m meeting with some doctors in New York, and we’ll go from there,” Benintendi said, per MLB.com. “We’ll just take it day by day at this point, I guess. I’ll need surgery at some point and get that done as soon as possible.”
Benintendi sustained a previous break of the same bone in college as a freshman at Arkansas. He had a procedure then to remove the broken bone, but apparently it wasn't completely removed.
"There could have been some left or whatever," Boone told reporters. "He'll have to have surgery on that."
The good news for Benintendi is that his recovery time in college was relatively short, leaving hope that he can return to the lineup before the conclusion of the season. The Yankees have 28 games remaining before the regular season concludes on Oct. 5.
“When I went through this before, it was right around a couple of weeks,” Benintendi said. “We’ll see what happens. Obviously, I want to get back out there in time for the latter part of the season and then, hopefully, the playoffs. It’s all too early to say right now.”
Benintendi, 28, made his first All-Star game this season with the Kansas City Royals. The Yankees traded for him at the deadline in exchange for the franchise's No. 19 prospect T.J. Sikkema, No. 21 prospect Beck Way and unranked prospect Chandler Champlain, all pitchers. The Yankees acquired him for this season's playoff run. He's slated to become a free agent in the offseason.
In 126 games with the Yankees and Royals this season, Benintendi is slashing .304/.373/.399 with five home runs, 51 RBI and eight stolen bases. His average has dropped from .320 with the Royals to .254 in 33 games with the Yankees. The Yankees have struggled to an 11-20 record since Aug. 1 but maintain a five-game lead over the Rays in the AL East with an 80-54 record.