Ellsbury exits game early due to hip tightness

Girardi cautious with Yankees center fielder, hopes he can return soon

Ellsbury exits game early due to hip tightness

NEW YORK -- Yankees outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury was removed from the game in the eighth inning of Saturday's 8-2 loss to the Mets because he was experiencing some hip tightness. Manager Joe Girardi was not sure when the tightness began, but after he was alerted about it, he decided to make a move.

"With the score the way it was, I just said, 'I'm going to take you out,'" Girardi said. "'We'll see how you feel tomorrow, and hopefully you'll be a player for us.'"

Ellsbury, who finished the day 0-for-3 with a strikeout, had made a highlight reel catch in the fourth inning, charging to the left-center-field gap for a sliding grab near the warning track to rob Eric Campbell of an extra-base hit.

It is unclear whether this play had anything to do with Ellsbury's early exit, but Girardi decided to be cautious with his center fielder. Chris Young shifted over from right field to center and Garrett Jones entered the game to play right.

Ellsbury, 31, is batting 20-for-71 on the season with nine walks, four stolen bases and a pair of doubles. Although he has battled several injuries throughout his career, he remained healthy in 2014 and appeared in 149 games in his first year with the Yankees.

Jamal Collier is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.