Jacoby Ellsbury out Tuesday with hand issue

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Yankees manager Joe Girardi told Joel Sherman of the New York Post that outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury will sit out of Tuesday night’s series-opener against the visiting Mariners due to minor “hand pain.”

Ellsbury was run through a range of tests and they showed no structural damage. The hope is that he will be ready to go on Wednesday or Thursday.

Brett Gardner is starting in center field and Ichiro Suzuki is starting in left field Tuesday in New York versus Mariners right-hander Chris Young.

Ellsbury is batting .312/.369/.441 with eight stolen bases and 14 runs scored in 25 games this season after inking a seven-year, $153 million free agent contract with the Yankees in December.

Will Middlebrooks carted off field with left ankle injury

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Phillies third baseman Will Middlebrooks suffered a serious injury during Saturday’s Grapefruit League contest against the Orioles. The infielder was chasing down a pop fly in the eighth inning when he ran into left fielder Andrew Pullin, who inadvertently trapped Middlebrooks’ ankle under his leg. Middlebrooks was unable to put weight on his leg following the collision and was carted off the field and taken to a local hospital for X-rays.

Per MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki, not much is known yet about the severity of the ankle injury or the recovery time it will require, though it appears serious enough to set Middlebrooks back considerably as he seeks a backup/bench role with the team this spring.

The 29-year-old is currently seeking another opportunity to extend his six-year major-league career in 2018. He’s coming off of two down years with the Brewers and Rangers, during which he slashed a cumulative .169/.229/.262 with four extra bases through 70 plate appearances.