Travis Hafner gets good news about his shoulder

MRI shows some inflammation, veteran hopes to return in a couple of days
05/15/2013 12:07 AM ET
By Joe Auriemma

Travis Hafner has six home runs and 18 RBIs in 32 games played this season.(AP)
NEW YORK -- Reports before Tuesday night's Yankees-Mariners game suggested that Travis Hafner may have injured his shoulder, and that he would be another addition to the dreaded list of injured players. Those worries went away by night's end when Hafner and the Yankees received good news after he received an MRI.

"It's good," Hafner said of the results. "It just kind of showed some inflammation in the shoulder and got an injection in it and hopefully it clears up and I should be good to go in a couple of days."

Manager Joe Girardi also let out a sigh of relief as losing Hafner, who has been a key contributor to New York's first-place ballclub, would have been another blow to the already thin depth chart.

"Just a little tendinitis in his shoulder and he might be able to help tomorrow," Girardi said. "It came out as good as we could have hoped for and he's going to be OK."

Hafner already has six home runs and 18 RBIs in just 32 games this season, and has been one of the pleasant surprises of the Yankees' lineup. His average has taken a hit of late and Hafner believes that the soreness in the shoulder may have had something to do with it.

"I think it came from getting hit by a pitch in the last homestand," Hafner said of trying to pinpoint when his injury occurred. "I kind of got hit by a pitch up in the shoulder and after a day or two it started to bother me on my follow through and I just kind of hung around."

Prior to being hit by a pitch April 29 against Houston, Hafner was batting .305 this season. In the 11 games since, he is just 7-for-34 (.206) and his average has dipped to .260 overall.

The return of Curtis Granderson to the Yankees' lineup softens the blow of losing Hafner for even a couple of games. It also allows Girardi to put Granderson in the field and Vernon Wells in the designated hitter's spot. The move also allows Hafner to take his time and come back when he is officially ready to return, which could very well be this series.

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