Granderson injures groin, going to DL

NEW YORK -- Yankees center fielder Curtis Granderson has a strained groin and has been placed on the 15-day disabled list. Manager Joe Girardi said on Sunday that "it looks like a month" before Granderson will be able to return to the team's lineup.

Pitcher Mark Melancon has been recalled from Triple A and is available to pitch in Sunday's game against the Chicago White Sox.

Granderson was injured while running the bases during a 7-6 loss to the White Sox on Saturday.

"When I saw him pull up, my initial thought was he is out for a while," Girardi said. "That is not anything you want to see."

Brett Gardner will slide to center field in place of Granderson. Marcus Thames and Randy Winn will share left field.

With Javier Vazquez struggling, Girardi had to go to the bullpen Saturday -- leaving the Yankees in need of relief pitching.

Girardi didn't think Sergio Mitre or Alfredo Aceves would be available Sunday. The two combined for 4 2/3 innings of scoreless relief. David Robertson, whose ERA ballooned to 12.71, took the loss and could be a candidate to be sent down.

"We have some things we have to talk about," Girardi said.

Entering Saturday, Melancon (3-0, 1.76 ERA), Royce Ring (1-0, 0.00) and Jonathan Albaladejo (1-1, 1.42, 7 saves) were all pitching well at Triple-A Scranton.

During the sixth inning on Saturday, Granderson was stationed at first base, with Gardner at the plate. When Gardner hit an RBI single to center, Granderson stumbled over second and then midway to third, grasping his leg. He hopped the rest of the way.

"He said he didn't feel a pop, but it just kind of grabbed at him," Girardi said.

Girardi and trainer Steve Donohue ran from the dugout to third base. After a brief consultation, they helped Granderson to the dugout.

After the loss, the Yankees clubhouse was filled with concern, because groin injuries for outfielders can take weeks to months to heal.

"It is more scary than anything," Nick Swisher said.

Derek Jeter added, "Hopefully, it is not too long."

Granderson went to the hospital for an MRI and did not speak to the media.

Granderson did not spend any time on the disabled list last year. In 2008 he missed a month because of a fractured right hand. In 2004, he was out for two weeks with a sprained left ankle.

"It didn't look too good," Jorge Posada said. "We need someone to step up now."