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Yankees' Josh Donaldson's walk-off grand slam lifts ailing uncle

Josh Donaldson's performance on Wednesday night had special meaning and a special fan following from afar. 

After hitting his grand slam walk-off in the 10th inning, he led the Yankees to an 8-7 victory over the Rays,Donaldson said in an on-field interview. The YES network revealed that his Uncle Bill recently had a heart attack. Donaldson looked into the camera and told his uncle that he loved him and was praying for him. 

Josh Donaldson's uncle had a heart attack two days before him, so he hit a grand slam goodbye in his honor. rice field.

This is for Uncle Bill❤️

— YES Network (@YESNetwork) August 18, 2022

On Thursday, Donaldson's uncle called the Yankees third baseman to tell him he was watching a big win. 

"I was thrilled to hear that he could see," said Donaldson. 

Yankees DH Josh Donaldson hits a walk-off grand slam in the 10th inning of a win over the Rays.
Charles Wenzelberg / New York Po

"He is turning the corner. It seems to be a good direction. It's a pretty tough situation when you're dealing with it. But I know he's checking out the games and getting the excitement out of it, so it was nice to do that. good. " 

The walk-off grand slam was his 10th in Yankees history, and Babe said he was his third "ultimate" grand slam, after Ruth and Jason Giambi." (The club said goodbye to him by 3 points). 

As expected, DJ LeMahieu returned to the starting lineup Thursday in his four-game opener of his series against the Blue Jays. Although his starter since Saturday due to inflammation in his right big toe, he pinch-hittered Wednesday night and singled out on the first pitch. 

LeMahieu took his regular position at the top of the lineup, playing second base. 

"It lengthens [the line-up]," manager Aaron Boone said. did a great job getting to base this year." 

LeMahieu is expected to have to deal with a toe problem for the rest of the season, but he said Wednesday that He said he is confident that he will be able to overcome and play. 

"I think there will come a day when we are going to be strategic here," said Boone. "But it bears pain. We have to stand on it and have open and honest conversations." 

Giancarlo Stanton (Achilles tendonitis) He did his fourth straight pregame workout on Thursday, with a rehab assignment looming. 

"If the [workout] goes well, it could start this weekend, maybe [Friday]," Boone said. 

Relief Zach Britton (UCL Surgery) is scheduled to perform another live his bullpen his session on Saturday. After that, he could perform live again or start a rehab assignment. 

Boone was asked if the game could be closed when Britton returned to the Yankees. 

"Can we? Sure." said Boone. "I don't want to go. I don't want to put it on Zach. My biggest thing with him right now and the message to him is that things are going really well for him. … to the point where he's contributing. If it comes back to us, great.If it's in that highest leverage role, great.But to me, this is all about wanting Zach back healthy and back all the way.