Mark Teixeira to miss 8-10 weeks with strained wrist tendon

TAMPA, Fla. — The Yankees’ injury-riddled spring took another serious hit on Wednesday, as the team announced Gold Glove first baseman Mark Teixeira will miss eight to 10 weeks with a strained tendon in his right wrist.

Teixeira was evaluated on Wednesday by team physician Dr. Christopher Ahmad and specialist Dr. Melvin Rosenwasser. Teixeira has been advised to have four weeks of complete rest in New York and will not rejoin the Yankees in Florida this spring.

Teixeira was diagnosed with an ECU tendon sprain, which is a similar injury to the one that Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista suffered last season at Yankee Stadium. Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said that surgery will not be required.

Teixeira told the team he felt a pop in his wrist while hitting off a tee with Team USA’s World Baseball Classic squad on Tuesday in Glendale, Ariz. He was scratched from the lineup and flew to New York for further tests to reveal the severity of the strain.

With Teixeira expected to be out of the lineup until the middle of May, the Yankees suddenly have a new lineup headache to contemplate, having already lost slugger Curtis Granderson for 10 weeks to a fractured right forearm.

“Two of the guys that you probably expected to hit in the middle won’t be there Opening Day,” Girardi said. “We’ll put it together. We have 3 1/2 weeks to decide.”

Girardi and general manager Brian Cashman said that the team will be evaluating both first basemen and third basemen as the spring continues, since Kevin Youkilis offers versatility in having played both first and third bases during his career.

“He provides flexibility,” Cashman said. “The problem is, if you move Youk, we need someone to play third. Youk can do first, it’s a layup, he’s great at it. But we’d need a third baseman, that’s the problem.”

The Yankees have been taking a look at Dan Johnson at both infield corners, and could also consider Jayson Nix or Eduardo Nunez at third base. Girardi said that he is ready to consider “everyone who’s in camp.”

“Third base is difficult,” Cashman said. “First base is always an easier position to fill than third.”

While Juan Rivera has played some first base, Cashman said that the Yankees look at him more as an outfielder. Cashman also ruled out the idea that Travis Hafner – who has not played first base since 2007 – would do anything other than serve as a designated hitter given his lengthy injury history.

“He’s a field goal kicker, which is fine,” Cashman said. “I know what I got, and I want him to be that, but he hasn’t picked up a glove in seven years. I’m not making fun of him, he’s just someone that is an amazing hitter but he has a history of injuries. We’re not going to put him in a position by trying to put a glove on him to get him hurt. He’s our DH.”

Cashman said that his staff must use the rest of the spring to evaluate what is in camp with the Yankees, as well as to make phone calls and explore what is available elsewhere.

He did not mince words, however, about a general lack of optimism that the Yankees will be able to find better options outside the organization than what they already have assembled in camp.

“It’s not the time of year to make any move,” Cashman said. “Usually movement takes place after the [June First-Year Player] Draft, unless people are trying to cut garbage.”

1 Comment

Going to be a long, long season.

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