BOSTON (AP) — Mike Tauchman's impressive first season with the New York Yankees might have come to an abrupt end.
The outfielder is expected to be sidelined for six to eight weeks after sustaining a Grade 2 strain in his left calf while fielding a ball in Sunday night's 10-5 win over the Boston Red Sox.
The injury-plagued Yankees hold a big lead in the AL East. The AL playoffs begin Oct. 2 and it's uncertain whether Tauchman would be able to recover, rehab and be ready to play in the postseason.
"Right now, I'm just bummed out for him, but we've got to move forward," Yankees manager Aaron Boone said Monday.
The 28-year-old Tauchman posted career highs across the board this season with a .277 average, 13 home runs and 47 RBIs through 87 games. He's also provided solid defense.
Tauchman exited after sustaining the injury while fielding Brock Holt's single to left field in the fourth inning. He had experienced left calf soreness and was receiving treatment as recently as Saturday.
"I planted coming in on that ball and I felt it grab up on me," Tauchman said after the game. "It felt a little bit like I got kicked, which would be weird because I was the only person in left field."
Tauchman went 2 for 2 with a two-run homer in Sunday's win on a night the Yankees broke their single-season home run record.
The former 10th-round draft pick was acquired from Colorado on March 23 and earned an opening day roster spot.
"He's been such an important player for us," Boone said. "I know he's a big part of us moving forward, even though obviously it's not going to be on the playing field for a while."
Before joining the Yankees, Tauchman hit .153 with only two RBIs in 52 games with the Rockies.
Tauchman's injury is the latest in a long string for New York. The Yankees have placed an MLB-record 29 players on the injured list this season. Cameron Maybin, who had been on the injured list, took Tauchman's place in left field.
New York entered Monday's series finale against rival Boston tied with Houston for the majors' best record at 94-50.