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Jones scratched from lineup due to oblique pain


BRADENTON, Fla. -- The removal of Garrett Jones from Thursday's original lineup had a couple of interesting repercussions.

With Brad Hawpe starting instead of Jones at first base and Gaby Sanchez already scheduled to start at third, the Bucs had a new look at both corners of the infield. It was the first Grapefruit League start at those positions for both (Sanchez did start at the hot corner in Tuesday's game against Spain).

Jones' scratch sparked a brief brush fire of speculation that something might be afoot with the Yankees, who have been actively looking for help in the wake of the wrist injury that will force Mark Teixeira to miss as much as the first two months of the season.

The fire was put out soon enough: Jones complained of some soreness in his left side when he got to the clubhouse on Thursday morning, and thus was rested as a precaution.

"I felt it a little bit in the game [Wednesday]," Jones said, "and when I got up in the morning, I felt it a little bit more. I'd never had any problems in the oblique area, so just wanted to be cautious so it doesn't become something more serious."

Jones even participated in the morning warm-up, playing long-toss with Andrew McCutchen and throwing without apparent discomfort. But he skipped the rest of the pregame drills, instead getting treatment. He will "do nothing" on Friday, and likely rest through the weekend before the Pittsburgh staff determines when he might resume playing.

Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog Change for a Nickel. He can also be found on Twitter @Tom_Singer. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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