Brett Gardner may miss the rest of the season

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Yankees center fielder Brett Gardner, who left yesterday’s game with a ribcage/oblique injury, has been diagnosed with a Grade 1 strain and could miss the rest of the season.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi told reporters that Gardner will be out “a while” and, if he does return before the end of the regular season, it may be strictly as a pinch-runner.

Gardner has been one of the few healthy, productive Yankees this season, playing in 145 of the first 147 games while hitting .273 with a career-high eight homers, a league-leading 10 triples, and a .759 OPS.

Curtis Granderson has shifted back to center field with Gardner out, leaving Alfonso Soriano and Ichiro Suzuki in the outfield corners.

Umpire admits he blew the call that got Joe Maddon ejected last night

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Last night in the top of the eighth inning of the Dodgers-Cubs game, Curtis Granderson struck out. Or, at the very least, he should’ve. After the game, the umpire who said he didn’t admitted he screwed up.

While trying to squelch a Dodgers comeback, Wade Davis got Granderson into a 2-2 count. Davis threw his pitch, Granderson whiffed on it, it hit the dirt, and Willson Contreras applied the tag for the out. End of the inning, right? Wrong: Granderson argued to home plate umpire Jim Wolf that he made slight contact with the ball, Wolf, after conferring with the other umps agreed, and Granderson lived to see another pitch.

Before he’d see that pitch, Joe Maddon came out to argue the call and got so agitated about it all he was ejected for the second time in this series. He was right to argue:

It all ended up not mattering, of course, because Granderson struck out eventually anyway.

Normally such things end there, but after the game a reporter got to Wolf and Wolf did something umpires don’t often do: he admitted he blew the call:

It’s good that the bad call ended up not affecting anything. But the part of me who likes to stir up crap and watch chaos rule in baseball really kinda wishes that Granderson had hit a series-clinching homer right after that. At least as long as it didn’t result in Cubs fans burning Chicago to the ground.