OAKLAND -- A monster night at the plate for Yankees sensation Gary Sanchez ended with a scare Thursday night in Oakland.Sanchez reached base all five times for the Yankees, going 3-for-3 with two walks, two singles, a double, a stolen base and 2 RBIs. Both his double in the seventh
OAKLAND -- A monster night at the plate for Yankees sensation Gary Sanchez ended with a scare Thursday night in Oakland.
Sanchez reached base all five times for the Yankees, going 3-for-3 with two walks, two singles, a double, a stolen base and 2 RBIs. Both his double in the seventh and his single in the ninth scored second baseman Starlin Castro to tie the game for the Yankees, who fell to the the A's, 8-7, in 10 innings.
But on the stolen base in the ninth, Sanchez felt tightness in one of his abductor muscles around the groin. After waiting a batter, Sanchez called third-base coach Joe Espada out and took himself out of the game as a precaution. Yankees manager Joe Girardi said he's day to day.
"I don't think it's too much to worry about," Sanchez said through a translator, while adding he didn't think he'd need an MRI. "We'll wait and see how I feel tomorrow and take it from there."
It's been back-to-back big days for Sanchez, who went 3-for-5 in Anaheim on Wednesday night with a homer, his 11th of the season. Statcast™ measured it at 441 feet, his third-longest of the year. He's averaged 431 feet on his homers, leading all of the Majors for average home run distance with a minimum of five homers by 13 feet.
In his past seven games, Sanchez has gone 14-for-28 with 11 runs scored, three doubles, five homers and 17 RBIs. He's also drawn five walks, while only striking out five times, helping raise both his average and his on-base percentage nearly 50 points each.
"Definitely feel better at the plate right now," Sanchez said. "I've been trying to put a good swing on the ball. Things are working out right now."
Girardi concurred while hoping for the best with the muscle tightness, adding, "He's swinging the bat extremely well. He's a dangerous hitter right now. Obviously it's not a good time for him to miss any time, so hopefully it's not much."
Sanchez wasn't the only Yankees player to exit Thursday's game early. Outfielder Aaron Hicks, who went 0-for-5 with two strikeouts on the night, left in the ninth inning with an Achilles' injury.
"I felt it swinging," Hicks said of his at-bat in the eighth inning, when he grounded out to first. "I was in the box swinging, and it felt a little uncomfortable. ... I figured it would go away, but it just continued on, and I just told them that it felt uncomfortable. And they pulled me out."
Alex Simon is a reporter for MLB.com based in the Bay Area. Follow him on Twitter at @alexsimon99.