Saturday night, the Yankees’ rookie league affiliate, the Pulaski Yankees, tweeted rather cryptically about Blake Rutherford, the team’s first-round pick in this year’s MLB draft. Less than two hours later, they deleted the tweet, elevating the cryptic factor.
And Sunday morning, it was reported that Rutherford would be sidelined for a bit with a hamstring injury—an answer that, depending on how skeptical you are, either resolves the earlier confusion or just raises even more questions.
Rutherford, a centerfielder drafted out of California’s Chaminade College Preparatory School, has been with the Pulaski Yankees since mid-July. He hasn’t played since August 24, but this hadn’t attracted that much attention, if any, because it’s rookie league and it’s the end of the season and it’s been less than a week.
But the Pulaski Yankees’ tweet was strange. Why does a team need to “no comment” and refer questions elsewhere in a situation where people really didn’t seem to be asking any, and why was this tweet deleted? And if Rutherford simply suffered a hamstring injury, what’s the big deal? The Appalachian League season lasts for approximately another week and Instructs start in about a month—meaning Rutherford is only expected to be out for a couple of weeks.
Which, in turn, only makes the way it’s been handled that much stranger.