Brett Gardner injury: Yankees OF strains oblique

Rich Schultz

The injury could cause Gardner to miss the remainder of the season.

New York Yankees outfielder Brett Gardner strained his left oblique, reports Daniel Barbarisi of the Wall Street Journal.

Gardner left Thursday's game against the Baltimore Orioles after his first at-bat, feeling a pain in his ribs on a check-swing strikeout. He immediately informed manager Joe Girardi that he needed to exit the game, telling Wallace Matthews of ESPNNewYork.com:

"I felt like if I went out there, it was just going to get worse. I was going to hurt the team 'cause I wasn't anywhere close to 100 percent so I let 'em know."

The outfielder will travel to New York to undergo an MRI. Girardi expects that Garnder will miss "a couple of days," but oblique injuries can linger for 2-3 weeks, which could sideline Gardner for the remainder of the season.

Gardner has had a productive offensive season, batting .273/.344/.416 with 24 steals while playing standout defense. New York will miss his production at the top of the lineup; he has served as the team's primary leadoff hitter.

New York enters Friday with a 79-68 record, one game behind the Tampa Bay Rays for the second AL Wild Card spot.

Late Friday afternoon, Joel Sherman of the New York Post reported that Gardner had a Grade 1 strain:

Further reports suggest Gardner will almost certainly miss the remainder of the regular season but could return in time for the playoffs should the Yankees actually win a postseason berth without him.

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