CINCINNATI -- Brennan Boesch described his slide into home plate Saturday as a "crazy ninja jump."
He didn't mean it in a good way. His right ankle, which was caught underneath his leg on the slide, didn't care for it either.
"On video, you couldn't really see what was happening underneath my leg when I slid," he said. "This is the foot that's tucked under. I slid with my left leg. It's like I started sliding at third base. I wanted to get that run so bad I started sliding like 50 feet in front of home plate. I wasn't sure if I was going to have to take the catcher out. I was going to be safe one way or the other."
Boesch was optimistic that an afternoon of treatment and workouts would get the sprained ankle strong enough to let him play Sunday night's series finale against the Reds. Once he started running, though, he didn't have the range he felt he needed to give himself a fair chance at a running play.
Thus, Boesch was scratched from the Tigers' lineup. Quintin Berry, who had been starting in center field until Austin Jackson returned from the disabled list Saturday, replaced him in right field and batting second.
The good news for Boesch is that there's very little swelling, which leaves him "pretty fairly optimistic" that he can return to the lineup Tuesday night against the Cubs at Wrigley Field.
Officially, he's day to day. But with as many injuries as the Tigers have had, manager Jim Leyland expected that.
"Everything's day to day with us this year," he said with a hint of exasperation.
Boesch would play a key role in the Tigers' four-run eighth inning later in the evening. Pinch-hitting for Brayan Villarreal, Boesch singled off Aroldis Chapman to load the bases and was replaced by pinch-runner Hernan Perez.