The last time Aaron Hicks injured an oblique muscle, it cost him 39 games.
The Yankees can only hope the outfielder isn’t looking at something similar now, though it’s too soon to tell.
Hicks hurt his left oblique Saturday afternoon chasing down Hanley Ramirez’s drive to the warning track to end the sixth. He ran in gingerly at inning’s end and was replaced in centerfield by Jacoby Ellsbury in the top of the seventh. (Ellsbury tripled and scored on Gary Sanchez’s single in the bottom of the inning.)
Hicks, who had an MRI after Saturday’s 5-1 victory over the Red Sox, spent June 26-Aug. 9 on the disabled list with a right oblique strain. Shortly after he was removed, the Yankees described Saturday’s ailment as “tightness.”
“It’s the other side, so I don’t know exactly what it means,” Joe Girardi said of the injury’s severity. “I don’t know if he felt it as much as the last one. I just got the report that he felt something, and now he’s in an MRI tube.”
Hicks hasn’t been great at the plate since coming off the DL — he had a .214/.299/.357 slash line in 21 games entering Saturday — but has continued to play solid and at time spectacular defense and had a 4-for-4 game Wednesday.
Starlin Castro was supposed to play Saturday afternoon, but a dental emergency got him scratched.
“It was a root canal and he’s been at the dentist since 7 o’clock this morning,” Girardi said before the game. “He did not sleep much last night.”
Castro did return to the ballpark. Girardi said he expected him to be available to pinch hit, but he did not play.
Make your own Judgment
Aaron Judge batted cleanup Saturday — he went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts to drop his average to .276 — after batting sixth on Thursday and second on Friday.
“He’s had good at-bats against [Red Sox lefthander Drew] Pomeranz,” Girardi said before the game. “We continue to move him based on the need.”
Yankees pitchers held the Red Sox to 0-for-4 with runners in scoring position Saturday, dropping Boston to 0-for-15 in the series in such situations. The Yankees have held the Red Sox to a .148 average (19-for-128) with runners in scoring position this season, including 6-for-51 (.118) in nine games at the Stadium.
Home away from home
Red Sox rookie Andrew Benintendi went 1-for-3 with a walk, improving to 12-for-31 (.387) with five homers, 12 RBIs, five walks and five runs in nine games at the Stadium this season.