MINNEAPOLIS – Zack Britton had to be removed from the Yankees’ 5-1 victory over the Twins in Game 3 of the AL Division Series in the eighth inning on Monday night after he injured his right ankle an inning earlier while covering first base.
The Yankees will open the ALCS against either Houston or Tampa Bay on Saturday, and Britton apparently will be available for that series.
Aaron Boone said Britton “jammed his ankle a little bit” when he covered first base on a ball hit by Jorge Polanco that went past a diving DJ LeMahieu and was fielded by Gleyber Torres in the seventh. Torres made an underhanded toss to Britton, who was late covering first but still beat the sliding Polanco.
Britton, who was visited by trainer Steve Donohue, finished the inning. In the eighth, he gave up a solo homer by Eddie Rosario and got an out before Donohue came out again. This time, Boone took out Britton and brought in Aroldis Chapman, who got the final five outs to close out the series.
“Brit made a great defensive play getting over there to get a big out there covering the bag and kind of jammed his ankle a little bit,” Boone said. “He came in and kind of got stretched out and felt good enough to go back out. We're obviously, at that point, [trying to] split it up as best we could between him and Chappy. He was just a little tender, a little kind of gingerly in really finishing his pitches. We just felt like we needed to get him out of there. Chappy was up and ready to go. It was probably a bit earlier than we wanted, but obviously, Chappy was able to finish it off.”