Yankees’ Aaron Judge on verge of big steps for return from COVID IL

There may be Aaron Judge sighting Sunday in Fenway.

No. 99 will not be off the Yankees’ lineup and back starting in right field against the Boston Red Sox, but he’s scheduled to be back with the team making final steps to return from the COVID injured list.

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The plan for Judge is to travel from Boston to Tampa with the Yankees after Sunday’s game, then work out there during Monday’s off day.

And then …

“We’ll see where we are from there,” manager Aaron Boone said before Friday night’s Yankees-Red Sox game.

That’s not ruling out Judge coming off the IL to suit up for Tuesday night when the Yanks and Rays open a three-game series at Tropicana Field.

It hasn’t taken the Yankees long to kill off a COVID outbreak that sent six players to the injured list in a week, five of them in a span of two days.

Pitchers Jonathan Loaisiga and Nestor Cortes were off the injured list and back on the Yankees’ roster for Friday night’s game in Boston.

Gio Urshela could join them by Sunday to play third base in the Yankees-Red Sox’s series finale at Fenway Park.

By early next week, No. 2 catcher Kyle Higashioka and Judge figure to be back, too. Higashioka also is scheduled to be in Boston by Sunday and flying to Tampa with the Yankees.

Reliever Wandy Peralta also doing well, too, but the left-hander probably will need a rehab assignment before rejoining the Yankees

“Peralta is back in New York,” Boone said. “He’s been at (Yankee) Stadium the last two days working out and getting ready to go. We might end up doing a rehab assignment with him because he only had one outing coming off the last IL trip and then going on the COVID. So we’ll see if he needs maybe a little rehab outing as he works his way back.”

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Randy Miller may be reached at rmiller@njadvancemedia.com. Follow him on Twitter @RandyJMiller. Find NJ.com on Facebook. Tell us your coronavirus story or send a tip here.

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