Swish out of action probably for a week

Nick Swisher says he will be out of the lineup for three days. Yankees manager Joe Girardi says that Swisher will be sidelined for a week.

Go with a week.

Despite Swish’s optimism that his low-grade left hamstring strain is not something that should incapacitate him for as long as his manager believes, the Yankees always exercise caution with injuries, particularly this early in the season when cool weather prevails, certainly not the most conductive climate for a hamstring ailment.

“I had the same injury back in 2007, and I was out for nine or 10 days,” Swisher admitted, “but I feel like we got this early this time.”

True enough. Swisher felt the hamstring tug a bit in his first at-bat against the Tigers Sunday in the Yankees’ 6-2 victory. He stayed in the game because he thought it was minor. He walked in the third inning, but when he came up grabbing the hammy after he dived back into first base to avert a pickoff, Swisher’s guard was down. Girardi and trainer Steve Donohue emerged from the dugout and brought Swisher back in with them.

The plan for Swisher, who is batting .284 with 6 home runs and 23 RBI, is to receive treatment for three days and not do anything on the field. He thinks he could be ready to play when the Yankees go to Kansas City for a four-game series Thursday, but Girardi’s view is that Swisher won’t be ready by then.

The Yankees expect to have Brett Gardner back in time for the KC series. He is eligible to come off the 15-day disabled list from his right wrist injury Thursday. In the meantime, the Yankees will take a look at Eduardo Nunez in the outfield. Nunez was in left field Monday night in the opener of a three-game set against the Orioles with Raul Ibanez moving to right field. Andruw Jones will also be in the mix.

The manager added that the Yankees do not plan to put Swisher on the DL, which means that when Gardner is activated a pitcher will likely have to be optioned.

“I heard people throwing the word DL around,” Swisher said. “That’s not part of my vocabulary. That’s not my style. I pride myself on being on the field every day. You kind of get frustrated with little nagging stuff, this and that. I thank the big man upstairs it wasn’t anything more, but I feel like I try to take care of my body and try to do the right thing and be one of those guys that’s out there all the time.”

On another front, Andy Pettitte had a rough time of it in an extended spring game against Phillies minor-leaguers in Clearwater, Fla. The comeback-minded lefthander gave up 6 runs (5 earned) and 10 hits with no walks and 8 strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings. Girardi was encouraged by Pettitte’s being able to throw 96 pitches (71 strikes) than the results.

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