Dizziness keeping Drew on the sidelines

Second baseman eager to get back into game action

Dizziness keeping Drew on the sidelines

NEW YORK -- The timing couldn't be worse for Stephen Drew, who said Sunday he's been sick for two or three weeks with dizziness and sinus issues in the midst of the Yankees' playoff chase.

After the Yanks beat the White Sox, 6-1, on Sunday, Yankees manager Joe Girardi was asked if everything was OK with Drew, who hasn't played in a game since Tuesday, when he entered in the 10th inning of a win over the Blue Jays.

Girardi said Drew has had a bad cold and dizziness for at least 10 days. Drew clarified that he thinks sinus congestion instigated fluid in his ears, which aggravated damage done when he was hit in the head by a fastball two years ago. 

"It's just constant right now. It's very frustrating because I felt fine and it's something that I really never dealt with," he said. "It's more or less just trying to get over this feeling that I have. Kind of hard to explain. It's definitely unique and it's not a good feeling to have."

When the Yankees played the Mets at Citi Field last weekend, Drew, who was experiencing the sinus issues by then, took a ground ball to the face. A 2013 concussion tweaked his balance system, and because he was dealing with the sinuses at the time of the ground ball last weekend, that system was more vulnerable than usual.

Drew said he had a concussion test done Saturday.

"I had a concussion in 2013 that messed up the vestibular system. With that said, it's kind of trying to pinpoint what's been going on. I think the concussion tests, I haven't really seen the results, but I think that's going to be OK," he said. " It's more or less the inner ear, trying to get my balance back and the dizziness going away."

In Drew's place, Dustin Ackley has seen more playing time as the go-to second baseman and Rob Refsnyder has earned time against left handers.

Ackley's solo homer

But Girardi indicated Sunday that Ackley has earned his playing time and that it's not directly related to Drew's sickness. Ackley hit a solo shot in the sixth inning Sunday. With smaller rosters making their return in the playoffs, many wonder which of the Yankees' second basemen will make the cut.

"I didn't come here expecting to be handed at-bats. I came over here to try to help this team, and that's what I'm going to try to do," Ackley said. "I don't make those calls, or those decisions, about when I do play or when I don't play. I just let the chips fall where they may. I think in the past, I've spent time worrying about things out of my control, but now I'm at the point where whatever happens, happens."

Asked if Drew was still the Yankees' top second baseman, Girardi didn't fully have an answer.

"It's hard to say because we haven't seen him play for the last 10 days because he hasn't felt good," Girardi said. "It's just something we're dealing with."

Drew said he's available off the bench and has continued to take batting practice and grounders. He didn't seem to have a timetable for his return, but said the doctor thinks it should pass soon.

"I was swinging the bat well and the timing's not good at all," he said. "The season's ending and it's very frustrating. At the same time, I've got to get well. It's not fair to them, it's not fair to me, and hopefully this thing can kind of pass sooner than later."

Grace Raynor is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.