After suffering a broken foot during an at-bat in early August, Carpenter had to be in a walking boot for well over a month. He has been able to ramp up baseball activities this past week to the point where he has started taking live batting practice and running the bases.
Carpenter, 36, had hoped to return for the four-game series against the Texas Rangers that starts Monday. But with the Yankees needing to make room on their 40-man roster, Carpenter was transferred to the 60-day injured list and now is postseason-eligible only.
"We'll see how he continues to do," Boone said ahead of Sunday's series finale against the Baltimore Orioles. "The biggest thing is we just want him to start getting at-bats. Between now and the start of the division series when we get back, he should be able to rack up a number of live at-bats."
As Major League Baseball shifts to a 12-team playoff with a three-game wild-card format, the Yankees are scheduled to have five days off ahead of the American League Division Series, which starts Oct. 11. The Yankees have established an alternate workout site to keep hitters and pitchers game-ready; it is hosted by the Somerset Patriots, their Double-A affiliate.
Boone said the Yankees will have eight or nine pitchers working out in Somerset, including left-hander Wandy Peralta, who is currently on the injured list with back issues and will not be activated until the ALDS. It might be the same case with reliever Clay Holmes, who has been shut down with shoulder inflammation and will not pitch in the majors until the start of postseason play.
The Yankees hope Carpenter can contribute as a left-handed bat off the bench this postseason, but Boone did not say if they would test him in the outfield before activating him off the injured list.
"That's exciting to think about," Boone said Saturday, addressing the possibility of Carpenter being available for the playoffs. "He's doing really well. The hitting is going well. Hopefully, he should be able to rack up a lot of live at-bats over the next week or 10 days to put himself in a good spot."
Carpenter agreed to a one-year contract with the Yankees at the end of May, a week after he was released from the Rangers' minor league system. In 47 games, Carpenter had been one of the Yankees' biggest contributors, hitting .305 with 15 homers, 37 RBIs and a 1.138 OPS.
Boone also announced that the Yankees plan to activate reliever Miguel Castro (shoulder) from the injured list Monday for the series at Globe Life Field and that Albert Abreu (elbow inflammation) would be a bullpen option against the Rangers.