Yanks await verdict on Judge after oblique injury

New York Yankees star Aaron Judge is likely headed to the injured list after injuring his left oblique while taking a swing during Saturday's game against the Kansas City Royals, manager Aaron Boone said.

Judge gingerly made his way to first base after hitting a single in the sixth inning of a 9-2 victory at Yankee Stadium. He appeared to feel something on his side and labored to run it out.

Trainer Steve Donohue came from the dugout to check on Judge, who then immediately left the game and was taken to New York Presbyterian Hospital for further evaluation and an MRI.

Asked after the game if there was any way the All-Star slugger could avoid going on the injured list, Boone said: "Probably not. No."

The team later said it expected to promote infielder Thairo Estrada from Triple-A to take Judge's spot on the roster Sunday.

Judge had homered in the first for a New York team already missing a dozen players because of injuries. The right fielder, who has played in every game this season, is batting .288 and has five home runs and 11 RBIs.

"It's Aaron Judge. He's one of the great players in the game,'' Boone said.

Judge, 26, suffered a chip fracture in his wrist after being hit by a pitch the previous time the Royals played a series at Yankee Stadium, last July.

New York entered the game with 12 players on the injured list, including Giancarlo Stanton (strained left biceps), Luis Severino (right rotator cuff inflammation), Gary Sanchez (strained left calf) and Aaron Hicks (lower back strain).

Of the injured players, only Sanchez appears close to returning. Before the game, Boone said the catcher could return Wednesday in Anaheim against the Angels if there are no problems in a minor league rehab game Monday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.