Eduardo Nunez out with sore hamstring

Updated: July 3, 2011, 7:55 PM ET
By Mike Mazzeo | Special to ESPNNewYork.com

NEW YORK -- New York Yankees shortstop Eduardo Nunez told manager Joe Girardi he could play Sunday despite having a tight right hamstring. But Nunez couldn't convince Girardi to keep his hot bat in the lineup.

Nunez, who suffered the injury after hitting his second double on Saturday afternoon, missed Sunday afternoon's 3-2 loss against the New York Mets at Citi Field. Ramiro Pena started in his place, and committed two errors.

"I feel sad because I'm not playing (Sunday)," the 24-year-old rookie said. "I told (Girardi) I could play."

Nunez said his hamstring felt tight after Saturday's game, but feels a lot better Sunday.

"I don't know why I'm not playing (Sunday)," Nunez said. "I feel good. It's not bothering me. It's nothing serious. I want to play (Sunday)."

Nunez said he'll receive treatment on the hamstring on Sunday, but no tests are scheduled at this point. Girardi said that he thinks Nunez will be able to play Monday in Cleveland.

"To go back out there in wet conditions, we're gonna give him the day off," Girardi said.

Nunez had spent the majority of the season as the Yankees' super-utility player before getting an opportunity to play every day after Derek Jeter strained his right calf on June 13.

Nunez has flourished in Jeter's absence, hitting .339 in the last 17 games Jeter has missed. New York has gone 14-3 during that span.

Nunez has starred in the Subway Series. In his last two games, he's 7-for-8 with a home run, three doubles and two RBIs.

But Nunez's playing time is expected to diminish significantly, since Jeter is expected to rejoin the Yankees on Monday night in Cleveland.

For the season, Nunez is batting .278 with three homers and 14 RBIs.

Mike Mazzeo is a regular contributor to ESPNNewYork.com.

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