New York Yankees C Ben Rortvedt Suffers New Injury While in Rehab

CHICAGO — Just as Yankees wide receiver Ben Rortvedt was cleared to play on a rehab assignment, working from his right oblique muscle strain, a new injury surfaced for the backstop.

“He’s got a knee problem right now,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said Friday before New York’s game against the White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field. “We kind of try to get our hands around it. He caught himself the other day and the knee caught him a bit. So we have to see what we have there.”

Boone added that Rortvedt is expected to have an MRI on his knee, visiting doctors to get an official diagnosis.

Rortvedt, 24, was acquired by the Yankees in the Josh Donaldson and Isiah Kiner trade Falefaa deal that sent Gary Sánchez and Gio Urshela to the Minnesota Twins in March.

New York pulled the trigger on the deal knowing that Rortvedt was managing an oblique injurysomething that previously appeared due to his off-season workload.

Rortvedt began his rehab mission on March 7, playing in back-to-back matches. He hasn’t appeared in a game since.

Asked about this frustrating stretch for the receiver, as he was unable to make an impact at his new club, Boone reiterated that the organization is still very excited to add him to the fold at the future.

“We’re obviously, knock on wood, in pretty good shape here right now with our catch-up situation,” Boone said. “But still, we’re really excited about him and what he brings to the table too. We just have to have him now. I feel like at some point he will play a role for us. “

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As Boone mentioned, even if Rortvedt was healthy, he might not make it into New York’s big league roster. With Kyle Higashioka and Jose Trevino in the pinstripe squad, playing good defense and helping that pitching staff excel early on, the more inexperienced Rortvedt probably would have been in Triple-A.

Again, the Yankees didn’t come out and trade for Trevino – as part of a deal with the Texas Rangers including right-hander Albert Abreu– until Rortvedt’s injury took a long time to recover.

Rortvedt, known for his defensive skills behind the dish, made his MLB debut with the Twins last season. He hit .169 in 39 games (15 in 89) with three homers.

During Rortvedt’s very brief rehab stint in Tampa, the 24-year-old was 2-for-4 at the plate with a homer and a walk.


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