Improving Swisher targets Friday's lineup

Improving Swisher targets Friday's lineup

SEATTLE -- Yankees outfielder Nick Swisher is hoping that manager Joe Girardi will clear him to return to the lineup on Friday, when the team hosts the Red Sox for the opener of a three-game series. And if not?

"We're going to fist-fight," Swisher said, with a laugh. "I feel good. I've done everything they've told me to do."

Swisher has been sidelined since Friday in Oakland by a mild strain of his left hip flexor, and while Girardi has been more conservative with the switch-hitter's timetable, Swisher reported no problems after running in the outfield at Safeco Field on Wednesday.

He also took batting-practice swings in the cage and will do so again with hitting coach Kevin Long on Thursday, as well as run the bases at Yankee Stadium.

"I'll be able to take as many swings as I want and be able to do everything," Swisher said. "I'm excited."