Gardner Close To Returning In Limited Role

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Brett Gardner underwent surgery on his right elbow on July 24th and was placed on the reserve list.  It appeared his season was over.

That’s about to change as the Yankees could desperately use Gardner’s speed on the base paths.  The Yankees are chasing after the American League East divisional crown in mid-September and are ready to activate Gardner in a pinch-running role.

Joe Girardi told reporters Gardner could be activated in the near future before Saturday’s game against the Tampa Bay Rays.

“It’s possible,” Girardi told Metro New York. “We need to get him on the field in some spikes in some situations that he might be put in before we can decide if he’s ready to go.”

Gardner is ready to re-join the Yankees in a limited role as a pinch-runner that could expand into a defensive replacement role once his health improves.  Before Saturday’s game, Gardner worked on bunting and base running drills.

“I’m not swinging a bat right now. I might start doing that next week, we’ll see how that goes,” Gardner said. “If there’s a situation where I can pinch-run or possibly play defense down the road, I’d like to help out.”

Will Gardner be able to make a difference in a limited role?  Let us know…