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Tribe playing it safe with Swisher's shoulder

CLEVELAND -- For the second day in a row, Nick Swisher wasn't in the Tribe's starting lineup, held out to nurse an ailing left shoulder as the Kansas City Royals arrived on Monday for a three-game series.

Indians manager Terry Francona said Swisher's shoulder was examined on Sunday and the results revealed no structural changes. Swisher received a cortisone shot on Monday. Cleveland hasn't ruled out placing him on the 15-day disabled list, but the club is confident Swisher will return to the field on Friday.

"We'll go all on him, on his symptoms," Francona said. "It's all dependent on how he feels. If he feels better and the medical staff OKs him, we'll play him before that."

Swisher last played on Saturday and appeared to aggravate his shoulder in the fifth inning. The first baseman/right fielder has struggled over his last 15 games, going 6-for-64 with 18 strikeouts. On the season, Swisher is hitting .237 (53-for-224) with seven home runs and 24 RBIs.

"I don't think it helped it," said Francona, referring to the injury's effect on Swisher's swing. "To what extent and when and where, it's hard to tell."

The sore left shoulder caused Swisher to miss three games between April 30 and May 3. Swisher said his shoulder felt great after those few days off, though it seems he never fully healed.

"With maintenance moving forward, he'll be able to kind of stay ahead of it," Francona said. "That's kind of what we're hoping for."

Mark Emery is an associate reporter for
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