Yankees place Rodriguez on injury list

NEW YORK (Reuters) - New York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a calf strain Saturday, leaving the Bronx Bombers without one of their biggest weapons during a crucial part of the season.

"(General manager Brian Cashman) talked to the doctors and the trainers and we just felt it was probably in the best interest to put him on the DL," Yankees manager Joe Girardi told MLB.com. "We're going to play it safe.

"We don't feel he's any worse than he was before but we're just going to play it extremely safe here and know that we'll have a player in 15 days."

Rodriguez, who recently hit his milestone 600th home run, injured his calf last Monday in a game against the Detroit Tigers and returned to the New York lineup Friday against the Seattle Mariners only to re-aggravate the injury.

While the Yankees own the major league's best record (76-47) they are locked in a tight pennant race with the Tampa Bay Rays in the American League East.

(Writing by Steve Keating in Montreal, Editing by Ken Ferris)