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Yankees' Rizzo sidelined eight weeks with broken forearm

Anthony Rizzo New York Yankees Anthony Rizzo - The Canadian Press

NEW YORK (AP) — Anthony Rizzo sounded forlorn, describing “another weird injury at first” that will sideline him until at least August.

Rizzo was put on the injured list by the New York Yankees on Tuesday, two days after breaking his right forearm when he fell in a collision with Boston pitcher Brennan Bernardino at Fenway Park.

Pitchers Ian Hamilton and Cody Poteet also are hurt, the Yankees said before a series opener against AL East rival Baltimore. New York brought up 25-year-old prospect Ben Rice to make his big league debut at first base against the Orioles.

Rizzo said he won't need surgery but the arm ached and he slept with it against his dachshund.

“Last night wasn’t as bad. I had Kevin right there on my arm. I think he knew that I was in pain, so he kind of helped,” Rizzo said.

Rizzo estimated he won't be able to resume baseball activities for at least four-to-five weeks, and the Yankees said he should be game-ready in eight weeks, though unsure whether that timetable was for a big league return or a minor league rehab assignment. He is not allowed to do any weight work.

“I'm not the fastest runner, but could not get doubled up there with where we were at in the game," Rizzo said, ”so I was just busting it."

Originally, Rizzo thought he hurt his wrist. He didn't fault Bernardino, who was covering the base to take a throw from first baseman Dominic Smith.

“There's no intent behind that. It's a weird play. Dom was going to second, kind of fumbled it, threw it to first. It was a bad throw," Rizzo said. “I landed wrong. If I don't land on my arm, we're not talking about this.”

Rizzo’s 2023 season was wrecked on May 28 when he collided with San Diego’s Fernando Tatis Jr. while trying to apply a tag on a pickoff attempt. Rizzo sustained a concussion and hit .174 with 10 RBIs in 47 games after the collision, leaving him with a .244 average, 12 homers and 41 RBIs.

A three-time All-Star, Rizzo is hitting .223 with eight homers, 28 RBIs and a .630 OPS. He began June in a 1-for-34 slide before going 4 for 14 with a home run and three RBIs in his last five games. A World Series champion with the 2016 Chicago Cubs, Rizzo has a .262 career average with 303 homers, 958 RBIs and four Gold Gloves.

Rizzo has a $17 million salary in the second season of a $40 million, two-year contract. The Yankees have a $17 million option for 2025 with a $6 million buyout.

Rizzo was put on the 10-day injured list. New York selected the contract of Rice, and left-hander Anthony Misiewicz from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and recalled left-hander Clayton Andrews from the RailRiders. Poteet went on the 15-day IL retroactive to Saturday with a low-grade right triceps strain and Hamilton retroactive to Monday with a moderate right lat strain. Right-hander Clarke Schmidt was transferred to the 60-day IL.

Poteet had gone 3-0 with a 2.14 ERA in four starts, filling the rotation spot that opened when Schmidt strained his lat muscle on May 26. AL Cy Young Award winner Gerrit Cole is due to be activated Wednesday to fill that slot and make his season debut against the Orioles.

Hamilton won't throw for three-to-four weeks. The right-hander, who turned 29 on Sunday, was to receive a PRP injection Tuesday night.

Hamilton dealt with the injury earlier this season and felt it when he gave up two runs in Sunday’s 9-3 loss. He has a 4.55 ERA — 2.60 in 14 games through May 5 and 7.11 in 14 games since.

Poteet, a 29-year-old right-hander, won't throw for one-to-two weeks.

Rice was hitting .275 with 15 homers and 26 RBIs in 49 games this year with Double-A Somerset and Scranton. He was notified when RailRiders manager Shelley Duncan contacted him by FaceTime at 10 p.m. Monday night, and Rice arrived at Yankee Stadium for the first time Tuesday.

He grew up a Yankees fan, though he lived in the Boston area.

“I loved Derek Jeter. He was always my favorite player,” Rice said. “My parents always said that he was a good role model. I read his biography when I was a little guy.”

Promoted to Triple-A on June 5, Rice batted .333 with three homers, 10 RBIs and a 1.059 OPS in 11 games with the RailRiders. Rice, a 12th-round pick in the 2021 amateur draft, played 118 minor league games at catcher and 55 at first.

“It’s definitely going to be a little bit of a work in progress," bench coach Brad Ausmus said.

Yankees manager Aaron Boone was to arrive at Tuesday’s game late after attending the high school graduation of son Brandon, leaving Ausmus in charge.

Ausmus, like Rice a former Dartmouth catcher, texted Yankees general manager Brian Cashman from a beach when Rice was drafted.

“It's always exciting to see a young guy come up and make their major league debut, but certainly this one’s a little bit closer to my heart,” Ausmus said.

Scott Effross, recovering from Tommy John surgery in October 2022, back surgery and knee surgery, is to start a rehab assignment Wednesday at Class A Tampa along with fellow right-hander JT Brubaker, coming back from TJ surgery in April 2023.