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Sunday, July 9, 2000
Updated: July 12, 8:20 PM ET
Spencer tore ACL in left field

ESPN.com news services

FLUSHING, N.Y. -- Shane Spencer, the New York Yankees' left fielder who will miss the rest of the season because of a knee injury, was placed on the 60-day disabled list Wednesday.

Spencer, 28, tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee Sunday night while fielding a ball in left field at Shea Stadium against the crosstown Mets.

Spencer was hitting .282 with nine homers and 40 RBI in 73 games this season. He rose to quick prominence with the Yankees in 1998 when he homered 10 times and drove in 27 runs in only 67 at-bats late in the season.

"He's devastated right now," Yankees manager Joe Torre said. "He worked so hard to get where he's at and now it's on hold."

The Yankees have used numerous left fielders this season but Spencer had received a majority of the playing time after Ricky Ledee was dealt to Cleveland for David Justice on June 29.

"It's a shame. He finally got a chance to play every day," Yankees second baseman Chuck Knoblauch added. "When I went out there, he said something popped."

Journeyman Felix Jose replaced Spencer in left field and went 1-for-3. Justice has been used primarily as a designated hitter since his arrival but can play left field.

"Shane's pretty distraught," Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said. "A lot of times you see this injury on a football field. He needs a knee reconstruction."

The injury was originally called a twisted knee, but an examination at Beth Israel hospital revealed the more serious injury.

Cashman said surgery would be delayed for at least a week until swelling goes down.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.