Left-hander Nestor Cortes of the Yankees said he is still recovering from a left groin injury he sustained over three weeks ago.
Cortes began his recovery last week after suffering the injury in Game 4 of the ALC Series against the Astros. Workdays for the 27-year-old have been Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. The area is still bruised, but he thinks he is getting better.
“I can move about with ease. We are moving very slowly, but I feel like I can jog,” said Cortes, who was in attendance at the Lou Gehrig Legacy Gala on Monday night at Chelsea Piers. “Last time, we moved a bit too quickly. I hurt it again.
Cortes suffered a groin injury in the third inning of a game that decided the Astros’ series victory over the Yankees. After allowing a 3-run home run to Astros rookie sensation Jeremy Pea, he left the game.
Since being put on the 15-day IL in late August, Cortes has been coping with the injury. The condition still hurt him when the AL Division Series between the Yankees and Guardians began. Cortes pitched five innings of a two-run ball in Game 2 while wearing a heating wrap around his groin. The Yankees lost, and Cortes received no decision.
Cortes returned to the mound four days after taking three days off, “put on my big-boy trousers,” and tossed five strong innings to help the Yankees win Game 5 and go to the ALCS.
The injury forced him to exit the game early in Game 4 versus Houston, which was the next time he pitched.
“My groin suddenly hit me. I experienced no pain. Cortes remarked, “I didn’t feel uncomfortable, but I knew my things weren’t there. “My speed has decreased. My items weren’t there. I made an effort to push through it. I believed I was competent enough to compete.
With a record of 12-4 and a 2.44 ERA in 28 starts, Cortes had his greatest season to date in 2022. He intends to perform even better in 2023 and attributes his outstanding campaign to the strength and conditioning department of the Yankees.
Being healthy for most of the season enabled Cortes to reach his full potential. “With the help of the strength coaches, they discovered where I was deficient in movement and flexibility. I was able to generate more velocity with their assistance. I credit my achievement to the momentum that soared this year. I’m hoping I can keep accelerating from here on out. I think I’m capable of more.