Mets, Yankees optimistic injured stars can return

Yankees Mets
Posted at 7:08 PM, Jun 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-30 19:08:35-04

NEW YORK — When baseball comes back next month, the stars of New York's two baseball teams might finally be ready to return, too.

Sidelined for nearly two years by injuries and then the coronavirus pandemic, New York Mets slugger Yoenis Cespedes could be healthy enough at last to play on opening day in late July — especially with the designated hitter available in the National League this season.

General manager Brodie Van Wagenen said Monday the team is optimistic about Céspedes.

Right fielder Michael Conforto should have no restrictions when spring training starts up again this week. Conforto strained a muscle on his right side in March before camps were closed due to the virus outbreak.

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman is optimistic right fielder Aaron Judge, left-hander James Paxton, center fielder Aaron Hicks and designated hitter Giancarlo Stanton will be ready to play in the time for New York’s rescheduled opener at World Series champion Washington on July 23.

Judge did not play in any exhibition games due to discomfort in his right pectoral muscle and shoulder that he felt when swinging.

Paxton had surgery Feb. 5 to repair a herniated disk in his back.