Originally scheduled to bat fifth and play right field, Church bowed out of the lineup roughly one and a half hours before the start of the Mets' 8:05 p.m. ET game against the Yankees. Fernando Tatis replaced him in the same lineup spot and position.
Church, 30, was batting .267 with two home runs in 57 games, starting regularly in right field for the Mets all month.
The Mets were already playing Sunday's game without Jose Reyes, Carlos Beltran and Carlos Delgado, all of whom are on the disabled list.
Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.