NEW YORK (AP) — Andy Pettitte left the New York Yankees' game against Tampa Bay in the third inning Sunday because of a strained left groin.
The pitcher was taken to New York-Presbyterian Hospital for an MRI, the Yankees said.
Making his first start since pitching in the All-Star game Tuesday night, the 38-year-old left-hander never appeared comfortable on a humid, 91-degree afternoon. He made a diving play on Carl Crawford's sacrifice bunt in the first inning, moments before giving up a three-run homer to Carlos Pena.
Pettitte flexed his left leg after falling behind in the count 3-1 to Kelly Shoppach in the third. Yankees manager Joe Girardi, pitching coach Dave Eiland and trainer Gene Monahan came out to check on Pettitte, who grimaced through a warmup pitch and then bent over at the knees before coming out of the game.
He was replaced by David Robertson with New York trailing 3-2. All-Star lefty David Price was on the mound for the Rays in the rubber game of a three-game series.
Pettitte's injury presented an immediate problem. The Yankees lacked an available long man Sunday because starter A.J. Burnett lasted only two-plus ineffective innings in a 10-5 loss Saturday, leaving the game with cuts on both hands following an angry fit in the clubhouse.
Frustrated by his outing, Burnett slammed open a set of double doors during the second inning Saturday, slicing both palms on the plastic lineup-card holders fastened to the entry. A day later, he said he apologized to his teammates for the outburst.
Burnett said he'll make his next scheduled start Friday night against Kansas City. Pettitte's status, however, was uncertain.