Bird has not played since May 1 because of right ankle and foot injuries that ultimately required surgery. The Yankees were uncertain whether Bird would return this season after the 24-year-old had the surgery last month to remove a bone in his foot.
But Bird belted three home runs and had six RBIs in a recent nine-game rehab assignment at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, prompting the Yankees to recall him for Saturday afternoon’s game. He will start at first base and bat sixth in New York’s lineup against Seattle right-hander Yovani Gallardo.
The Yankees demoted first baseman Tyler Austin to Scranton late Friday night to clear a roster spot for Bird, who batted just .100 in his first 19 games with New York this season.
After missing all of the 2016 season because of shoulder surgery, Bird led the Grapefruit League in home runs with seven before fouling a ball off his right ankle in the final days of spring training. He played through the injury but was unsuccessful at the plate, which forced him to the DL with what the Yankees initially described as a bruised bone in his ankle.
ESPN’s Andrew Marchand contributed to this report.