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New York Yankees outfielder Harrison Bader (foot) to start rehab assignment

Jun 10, 2022; St. Louis, Missouri, USA;  St. Louis Cardinals center fielder Harrison Bader (48) leaps to catch a line drive against the Cincinnati Reds during the fourth inning at Busch Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Outfielder Harrison Bader is coming closer to making his Yankees debut.

Acquired by New York in a trade-deadline deal that sent pitcher Jordan Montgomery to the St. Louis Cardinals, Bader hasn’t played since June because of plantar fasciitis. But manager Aaron Boone said Bader will join Double-A Somerset on Sunday to begin his rehab assignment.

Boone said Bader will need at least a week of preparation before he can join the Yankees, who have targeted the start of a homestand on Sept. 20 against the Pittsburgh Pirates for his return.

The Yankees, who are struggling to hold on to their once-massive lead in the American League East during the season’s stretch run, could use an infusion in the outfield.

Andrew Benintendi, another newly acquired outfielder, is out with a broken wrist. And Aaron Hicks has struggled, pulled mid-game by Boone after two blunders on defense led to three runs in Friday night’s 4-2 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays.

Hicks, 32, also is struggling at the plate, hitting . 211 with six home runs and 36 RBIs games.

Before the injury, Bader, 28, hit .256 with five home runs and 21 RBIs in 72 games. He also stole 15 bases.

Bader won the Gold Glove in 2021.

Also heading to Somerset for rehab are right-handed pitcher Miguel Castro (shoulder strain) and left-hander Aroldis Chapman (leg infection). The Yankees also transferred the rehab assignment of left-hander Zack Britton (Tommy John surgery) to Somerset from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

–Field Level Media