Yankees Manager Aaron Boone took an immediate medical leave of absence to receive a pacemaker this week and expects to return to the team this weekend. Frank Franklin II/Associated Press

NEW YORK — New York Yankees Manager Aaron Boone said he’s feeling better after getting a pacemaker and said he hopes to return to the team Saturday or Sunday.

Boone said he would have been back with the Yankees on Friday if not for novel coronavirus protocols.

“I think I’m ready to be back in the dugout,” he said during a news conference Friday.

He had the pacemaker inserted Wednesday and was discharged from St. Joseph’s Hospital in Tampa, Florida, on Thursday. Boone said he felt light-headed at times during the offseason and reached out to his cardiologist for testing. He said monitoring determined he had a low heart rate.

“Energy level, not myself. I felt like I had to reach for it every day in a way,” he said of his feelings before the procedure.

Boone said he has noticed marked improvement.


“You have your morning coffee, today’s morning coffee really worked,” he said. “Me and my new buddy are doing quite well.”

Boone is entering his fourth season as Yankees manager. He had open heart surgery in 2009.

• Domingo Germán pitched two scoreless innings for the Yankees in his spring training debut, a week after publicly apologizing for actions that led to his 2019 suspension under Major League Baseball’s domestic violence policy.

Germán struck out four and allowed one hit, a double by Wilson Ramos. The 28-year-old righty walked none.

Germán was 18-4 with a 4.03 ERA for the Yankees in 2019 when MLB put him on administrative leave while investigating an alleged domestic violence incident involving his girlfriend, with whom he has at least one child.

Germán missed the final nine games of the regular season and all nine of New York’s playoff games. On Jan. 2, 2020, he was suspended for 63 games – he was out for the entire pandemic-shortened 2020 season and playoffs.


ASTROS: Houston is minus eight pitchers because of COVID-19 protocols, but General Manager James Click said there were no plans to pause activity at the team’s spring training camp.

Manager Dusty Baker said Friday that pitchers Cristian Javier, Pedro Báez, Francis Martes, Enoli Paredes and Hector Velazquez are out. On Thursday, Baker said pitchers Bryan Abreu, Ronel Blanco and Luis Garcia were sent away from the complex.

It was not known whether the eight pitchers had tested positive for the virus or had come in close contact with someone who had tested positive. There was no exact timetable for their return, but they must quarantine for at least a week under Major League Baseball’s health and safety protocols.

BREWERS: Reliever Devin Williams says the shoulder soreness that kept the 2020 NL Rookie of the Year from pitching in the playoffs shouldn’t impact his readiness for the start of the season. Williams also doesn’t expect it to hamper his comfort level in throwing the changeup that became one of baseball’s most unhittable pitches last season.

“I’ve been throwing my changeup for a month and a half, two months now,” Williams said from the Brewers’ spring training site in Phoenix. “So it’s in a good spot. I’m not worried about it.”

The Brewers are being cautious with Williams as he works his way back. The 26-year-old right-hander says he doesn’t expect to make his Cactus League debut until after the Brewers’ second scheduled off day, which is March 17. Williams noted that he has done three bullpen sessions already and added that “everything’s been going according to plan.”


“Everything has gone well,” Manager Craig Counsell said. “We’re very happy with how it’s going, really. We’re on a nice schedule, we’re sticking to it and he’s responded very well to it and he’s feeling good. So I feel like we’re in a nice place.”

The shoulder issue caused the Brewers to leave Williams off the roster for their first-round playoff series loss to the eventual World Series champion Los Angeles Dodgers.

PITCHER SAM DYSON was suspended for the 2021 season by Major League Baseball under the domestic violence policy of the league and the players’ association.

The 32-year-old free agent last played in 2019 for San Francisco and Minnesota.

MLB began investigating Dyson in 2019 after a woman wrote two lengthy social media posts alleging domestic violence by an unnamed individual. The woman later told The Athletic that Dyson physically abused her.

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