New York Post

Kiner-Falefa held out, but closing in on return


ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Isiah Kiner-Falefa sat for a second straight game with a tight left hamstring.

The shortstop was not available as a pinch-runner Sunday against the Blue Jays in Toronto and Aaron Boone said he made out Monday’s lineup — with Kiner-Falefa not in it — after Sunday’s game.

“He’s a question mark for [Tuesday],’’ Boone said after the Yankees beat the Rays, 4-2, at Tropicana Field. “I do feel like he’ll be fine [Tuesday or Wednesday]. It seems to be trending in that direction, but I may be cautious with it, too.”

Still, Boone said he would have used Kiner-Falefa as a pinch runner for Josh Donaldson in the ninth if he was healthy — and decided against it.

“I didn’t want to push it,’’ Boone said.

With Kiner-Falefa out, Marwin Gonzalez got another start at short.

Gleyber Torres grabbed his side after reaching for an errant throw by DJ LeMahieu in the ninth, but stayed in the game and Boone said he was confident Torres was OK.

➤ Domingo German is set to begin a rehab assignment on Wednesday, when he’s scheduled to start for Single-A Tampa.

He threw a bullpen session at Tropicana Field on Monday as he closes in on a return from the shoulder impingemen­t that has sidelined him since the spring.

It’s still unclear how the Yankees intend to use the right-hander when he is ready to return, but he will at least begin the assignment with the idea of building up as a starter.

And while the bullpen has mostly thrived despite the absence of some important relievers, they allowed five runs in three innings in a rare bad performanc­e in Sunday’s loss in Toronto, when Miguel Castro and Wandy Peralta both gave up damaging homers.

➤ Several other pitchers are getting closer to a return, with Aroldis Chapman scheduled to throw live batting practice on Tuesday at the team’s player developmen­t complex in Tampa and Zack Britton a bullpen session.

Boone said Chapman, who has been out since May 24 with left Achilles tendinitis, would “most likely” need to go on a rehab assignment before returning to the Yankees.

Britton remains “a ways away” from a rehab assignment in his comeback from last year’s UCL surgery.

The Yankees expect the left-hander to be able to return later in the season.

Britton has primarily been working in Tampa, but is scheduled to go back to New York with the team following this series.

“He’s done most of his rehab [in Tampa] and now he can get with us and our trainers as he gets closer,’’ Boone said.

Jonathan Loaisiga (right shoulder inflammati­on) played catch from 105 feet at Tropicana Field on Monday and should be able to throw a bullpen session at some point during the Yankees’ upcoming homestand.

➤ Ryan Weber rejected an outright assignment to Triple-A Scranton/WilkesBarr­e and instead chose free agency, the Yankees announced Monday.

The right-hander was designated for assignment after he pitched effectivel­y in his lone appearance with the Yankees last Thursday, when he was called up after Luis Severino was placed on the COVID IL, forcing him to miss that start, with Clarke Schmidt taking his spot in the game before Weber took over in the win over the Rays.

The 31-year-old signed a minor league deal in the offseason and pitched well at SWB before getting called up to The Bronx. Weber has a 5.22 ERA in 64 career appearance­s.

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