One of the Yankees‘ young cornerstone players will have surgery Tuesday and could miss the rest of the season.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi announced Monday that first baseman Greg Bird will have surgery on his right ankle, which has sidelined him since early May. He saw a specialist Monday who recommended surgery.

Bird sustained the injury ankle in the final week of spring training when he a fouled a pitch off the ankle. He tried to play through it in April before landing on the disabled list. He has since seen numerous specialists and received multiple cortisone shots. The official diagnosis is inflammation in the os trigonum, which is an extra bone in his ankle.

It goes without saying both Bird and the Yankees have been frustrated by the ongoing ankle issue. He started a minor-league rehab assignment at one point, but had to shut it down after a few games because of renewed soreness. It took a while to find the exact injury and now he’ll have surgery, which could keep him out for the remainder of the season.

Earlier this month, an anonymous source ripped Bird to Bill Madden of the New York Daily News, and questioned whether Bird actually wants to get back on the field. Here’s the exact quote from Madden:

“You really have to wonder what’s with this guy,” a Yankee insider complained to me earlier this week. “You’d think with (Aaron) Judge and (Gary) Sanchez, the guys he came up through the system with, doing so well up here he’d want to be a part of this. Apparently not.”  

It sounded bad at the time and sounds even worse now, with the news that Bird needs surgery. We don’t know who this “Yankee insider” is and chances are we never will. It could be someone from outside the organization. But Yankees management has a history of saying silly things — team president Randy Levine ripped Dellin Betances over their arbitration hearing and COO Lonn Trost criticized fans looking for ticket deals — so they haven’t really earned the benefit of the doubt.

Regardless of who the “Yankee insider” is, the bottom line is questioning someone’s desire to play anonymously is gutless. If you’re going to question someone’s character and work ethic, put your name on it. 


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