Yankees scratch Nick Swisher (knee)

Updated: August 26, 2010, 9:10 AM ET
By Wallace Matthews | ESPNNewYork.com

TORONTO -- Nick Swisher was scratched from the New York Yankees lineup about a half-hour before the start of Wednesday night's Yankees-Blue Jays game at the Rogers Centre.

Swisher, who had to leave Tuesday night's game in the middle of a seventh-inning at-bat after fouling a pitch off his left knee, was originally in Joe Girardi's starting lineup but was pulled after he was too sore and swollen to engage in batting practice and other pregame drills.

"It's still a little sore, and with a built-in off-day tomorrow it's the smart thing to do," Swisher said through a Yankees spokesman. "With two full days of rest it gives me the opportunity to rest the leg."

In his place, Brett Gardner, originally given the night off, was plugged into the lineup in left field, and Austin Kearns, the left fielder in the original lineup, was shifted to right. Swisher's No. 2 spot in the batting order was given to center fielder Curtis Granderson, originally batting eighth with a left-hander, Brett Cecil, starting for Toronto.

Swisher left the ballpark Tuesday night with his knee heavily wrapped but vowing to play Wednesday night, but Girardi had acknowledged the possibility that his lineup, posted at 3:30 p.m., might change by game time.

"I told him, 'Swish, I'm putting you in there but I want to see you go through BP,'" Girardi said. "And if you can't go, I want you to tell me. He said he was sore, but sometimes when you get running around and you get some adrenaline going, you're OK. It's just easier for me to put a lineup out and change it later if necessary.''

Swisher fouled a Casey Janssen pitch off his knee with two out in the seventh inning of the Yankees' 11-5 win Tuesday night. After trying to remain in the game for two more pitches, Swisher was replaced by Brett Gardner, who inherited his 2-2 count. Two pitches later, Gardner took a called strike three, which mock-incensed Swisher, who was charged with the strikeout.

"I told him, for one time in your career you got a free swing, you got nothing to lose,'' Swisher said, "And you freaking take? How dare you?''

Wallace Matthews covers the Yankees for ESPNNewYork.com. Follow him on Twitter.

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Wallace Matthews has covered New York sports since 1983 as a reporter, columnist, radio host and TV commentator. He covers the Yankees for ESPNNewYork.com after working for Newsday, the New York Post, the New York Sun and ESPN New York 98.7 FM.
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