Pettitte already looking forward to return
“Obviously it hurt, and I’ve been hit in the shins so many times and never had to come out, so I figured it just got me in a good spot and eventually it’ll go away,” Pettitte said after the game. “It was bothering me in my warm-ups, but I figured I could just get through it.” But one pitch later he was out, and that fracture had Pettitte leaving Yankee Stadium in a walking boot with the hopeful diagnosis being that he would heal in about six weeks.
“As soon as I threw that first pitch, I had an awful lot of pain just run all the way down to my foot, and at that point I kind of felt like it might be something,” Pettitte said. “Still, I thought ‘surely it’s not broke,’ but unfortunately, it’s fractured.”
Pettitte himself isn’t sure if it will be longer or shorter, but the 40-year-old lefty certainly hopes it’s sooner rather than later that he’s back on the mound.
“I have no idea…I’m going to be in this boot, so as soon as they tell me I can throw, I’m going to start throwing, and I’m going to try to keep my arm in shape,” he said. “I have a lot of pain there right now, but hopefully in three or four days I can move around on it a little better.”
Pettitte’s loss is a big blow to the Yankees rotation, one compounded by the loss of CC Sabathia for at least the next two weeks with a strained groin. Since coming out of retirement and returning to the Majors in May, the lefty himself has gone 3-3 with a 3.22 ERA, but he has also helped stabilize a rotation that was struggling in the first few weeks of the season.
“It’s frustrating, but I think things happen for a reason. I’m trying to stay positive with it, and maybe it will help me down the stretch,” Pettitte said. “I just want to go out there and do my job and help this club … but we have a lot to be positive about, and we’ve got guys that will step up and do a great job.”
In the interim, that will be Freddy Garcia and Adam Warren; Garcia, who got the win in relief of Pettitte on Wednesday, will take his spot in the rotation and pitch Monday at the Rays, while Warren has been tabbed to replace Sabathia on Friday against the White Sox.
And despite the fact that Pettitte hopes to be back sooner rather than later, he will be one of their biggest supporters when they do take the mound.
“We just have to weather the storm, and it’s time to put my pom-poms on and be a cheerleader for the next few weeks,” he said, “but time flies and I’ll be back before you know it.”