Wednesday November 5th, 2014

New York Yankees outfielder Brett Gardner underwent surgery last month to repair a core muscle injury, the team announced on Wednesday.

Gardner, 31, had surgery on his right rectus abdominis muscle, which is near the ribcage, on Oct. 16. The procedure comes with a four-week recovery period, and Gardner said he is getting closer to being fully healthy.

"I think that here in the next week or two, I'll be pretty darn close to 100 percent and just be able to go through my normal offseason routine," Gardner said on Sirius XM/MLB Network Radio. "That's one of the reasons we just went ahead and got it done after the season.

"Obviously without making the playoffs, we got a much longer offseason than we would have liked, but it also gives me a little extra time on the front end to kind of get this thing taken care of and not have it be an issue next year."

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Gardner hit 17 home runs with 58 RBIs while batting .256 last season for the Yankees. He signed a four-year, $32 million extension before the 2014 season.

The Yankees finished 84-78 last season and missed the playoffs. Shortstop Derek Jeter played his final season with the team, and outfielder Alfonso Soriano retired this week. Third baseman Alex Rodriguez is eligible to return from the longest performance-enhancing drug suspension in league history.

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- Paul Palladino

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