Swisher concerned by knee, awaits MRI

Swisher concerned by knee, awaits MRI

ST. PETERSBURG -- Nick Swisher was happy to strap it on for his attempt at a Kirk Gibson moment in the Yankees' 1-0 loss to the Rays in extras on Monday, but the hobbled Yankees outfielder is looking forward to his date with an MRI tube.

Limping noticeably from a bruised left knee that Swisher said he aggravated during the Bombers' last homestand, Swisher said he is "excited" to get a second look at the injury, which he originally suffered on Aug. 24 in Toronto.

"We took the MRI before, and it said that there was nothing, but I found that really, really hard to believe," Swisher said. "We'll go in there tomorrow and whatever happens, just take it head on.

"... It's been going like this for a week, man. As much as you want to be out there and be playing, on one leg isn't exactly the way I want to be going out there."

Swisher is almost unable to run at this point, but he pinch-hit when needed in the eighth inning Monday, taking a crack against the Rays' David Price with a runner on first base and two outs.

"He said he could hit. It's just tough to run," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "We took a shot at it. Maybe he hits a ball in the gap."

Coming into the at-bat 3-for-10 with a homer and a double lifetime against Price, Swisher worked an eight-pitch at-bat before smacking a ground ball to third, which he jogged on for a no-contest out.

"I felt like I put some good swings on it," Swisher said. "He came right at me with some fastballs, and in a situation like that, all you're really trying to do is put something in the gap.

"Obviously it's a lot easier said than done. I went out there, gave it a good at-bat, then took it to the house."

Swisher said that he is concerned that continuing to play on the bad knee will have an unwanted ripple effect that could keep him out of the lineup longer.

"You can't keep going out there and dragging around my left leg," Swisher said. "It's starting to affect a lot of other things -- my hips, my shoulders, the way I'm throwing the ball. My swings are a little off. If we get this MRI and they say, 'Take a week off,' I want to get healthy, man."

Brett Gardner was also out of the starting lineup Monday, though he pinch-ran for for Lance Berkman in the 10th inning, stealing second but getting tagged out attempting to steal third to end the frame.

Gardner said that an MRI examination taken Monday in Tampa, Fla., revealed inflammation in his sore right wrist. Gardner had a cortisone shot administered. Gardner hopes to resume swinging a bat on Tuesday.

"It was pretty much good news," Gardner said before Monday's game. "Nothing's messed up. It's just a lot of inflammation where the tendon goes into the wrist. ... I couldn't have picked up a bat today."

Gardner's troubles with the wrist date back to a June 27 hit-by-pitch during the Yankees' Interleague series against the Dodgers, and the speedster mentioned to hitting coach Kevin Long that it has been bothering him again.