Results tagged ‘ Mark Teixeira ’
Mark Teixeira said that it was “pretty uneventful” to stand in against live pitching on Monday morning, but as the Yankees first baseman inches back toward game action, every step is an important one.
Teixeira took three swings from each side of the plate on the main field at George M. Steinbrenner Field, facing left-hander Manny Banuelos and right-hander Jose Campos. Teixeira ended the session with a solid single to left field off Banuelos.
“I wish I’d gotten a little more work, but we’ll get more work the next time I’m out there,” Teixeira said.
Teixeira said that he has not had any issues with his surgically repaired right wrist, but hitting left-handed is his main concern since it is his bottom hand from that side.
“In BP I’ve been swinging hard, but BP swings and game swings are totally different when you’ve got a guy throwing 90-plus,” Teixeira said. “I didn’t get any inside pitches, which I was hoping for today, but we’ll get more work in and I’m sure it will keep getting better.”
Teixeira said that the plan is to take live batting practice again on Tuesday and Wednesday, and then play on Thursday against the Phillies in Clearwater, Fla.
“I feel pretty good. We’ve been here over two weeks now and the wrist is getting stronger,” Teixeira said. “That’s the biggest thing. It needs to get stronger. The bat speed is pretty good. We’ll keep building up and hopefully on April 1 it’s feeling really good and the swing’s feeling really good and I’m ready to roll.”
What happened: This part of camp is usually dominated by the pitchers and catchers, but today’s highlight came from a position player. Mark Teixeira is on this side early since he’s a rehabbing player, and he was pleased by his on-field batting practice session.
Teixeira took 22 swings from the left side of the plate and 21 from the right side. He also hit off a tee, spraying quite a few line drives around the outfield. There were no home runs, but one ball hit the left-field fence on the fly.
“I actually felt better left-handed today. My swing path felt a lot better left-handed,” Teixeira said. “I was coming around it too much right-handed, but it’s just something that the first couple of weeks of Spring Training, I’ll make sure that bat path is good and your bat speed is good. Good first day, though.”
It was interesting to watch Teixeira and hitting coach Kevin Long analyze each swing, particularly while Teixeira was hitting off a tee. They were really going over mechanics and trying to get everything right at the earliest stage. This was Teixeira’s first time hitting on the field; all of his offseason hitting took place indoors.
“Nice to see the sunshine,” he said. “You can kind of trick yourself with how good you’re doing, because off the bat you can hit line drives and it looks good or it feels good. But if the ball is dying and it’s not traveling at all, then you know that you don’t have that power. Getting on the tee and getting outside and seeing the ball travel, seeing some nice line drives, seeing some nice fly balls – it was good to see that.”
What else happened: There were two bullpen groups, and it’s noteworthy – though not necessarily indicative of anything – that Matt Daley was included with Shawn Kelley, David Robertson and Matt Thornton. Daley is a non-roster invitee, but he was up with the Yankees last year and had good numbers at Triple-A. He figures to get a look for a bullpen spot. The other bullpens were thrown by Manny Banuelos, Cesar Cabral, Brian Gordon, Chris Leroux and Mark Montgomery.
What we learned: Masahiro Tanaka laced up his Asics running shoes this morning and said that yesterday’s four lap-event was more of a miscommunication than anything else. Tanaka hadn’t expected to run a mile after throwing a bullpen, but now he’ll know that’s a possibility next time. As for today’s running?
“Today was short distance. No problem at all,” Tanaka said, with a smile.
What we learned II: After missing all of 2013 while recovering from Tommy John surgery, the smart money is that Banuelos will begin the year at Triple-A, but Girardi doesn’t sound ready to completely rule out the idea of Banuelos breaking camp with the team.
“This is a guy who hasn’t pitched a lot in the last couple years, and he’ll probably have some limitations on how many games you can throw him, and that will have to be evaluated,” Girardi said. “But we’re going to look at every arm in camp, and try to put the 12 best together, and we’ll try to go from there. That doesn’t just limit him to being a starter. Who knows? He could be in the bullpen.”
What else: When Girardi writes out the lineups in his head, they always include Derek Jeter and Teixeira.
“They’re back, in my mind,” Girardi said. “But I think you have to get them in games to see exactly where they’re at, to be fair to them, and probably to alleviate any doubt that you might have. But in my mind, going into this year, with the surgeries they’ve had and the winters they’ve had, I’m expecting them to be players for us.”
Just one more thing: Catcher Pete O’Brien puts on a show in batting practice. Standing 6-foot-3 and 215 pounds, he’s got a big right-handed bat and hit 22 homers last year for Class-A Charleston and Tampa.
What they said: “I hope to play five more really productive years. I feel healthy, I’m in good shape. If the wrist is healthy, there’s no reason why I can’t be there for a long time. As long as someone will put me in the middle of a lineup, and at first base every day, I’ll keep playing.” – Teixeira
What’s next: Same time, same place tomorrow. Expect to see the guys on the field shortly after 10:15 a.m. ET. Position players report on Wednesday, with the first full-squad workout set for Thursday.
Mark Teixeira has arrived at Yankees camp. The first baseman discussed his recovery from right wrist surgery and expectations for the season this morning. Here’s a partial transcript:
On making it to camp: “I feel good. I’m excited about being here. No setbacks the entire offseason, the summer into the offseason, which is good. My surgeon was very happy and [head athletic trainer] Steve [Donohue] is happy. So I’m happy.”
On if the wrist feels as expected: “Yeah. The only thing is, I’ll just take it a little bit slow. I’m going to be taking normal batting practice, normal everything. It’s just, instead of 150 swings a day, it’s closer to 100 right now. Instead of seven days straight, it might be three days with a day off, or four days with a day off. That’s just being smart about it and not going from 60 miles an hour to 100 miles an hour the first day.”
On if his offseason was affected: “Not too much. I actually got to lift more, which was good. I feel like I’ve put on a couple of pounds of muscle, which is nice for me. My offseason started July 1st, and with the rehab and extra time, concentrating on my body and not worrying about resting, I got plenty of rest which was good. The first month or two of the offseason is just resting from a long season. I didn’t have that this year so I was able to work a little bit more.”
On if Teixeira expects to play a majority of the games: “I absolutely plan on playing 150-plus games this year. That’s my goal. Every now and then I’ll have a day off, of course. That’s just natural. You get beat up a little bit during the season, but I expect to have a healthy, productive season.”
On being an anchor of the lineup: “Yeah, I think the great thing is, look at our lineup. We’re back to being the Yankees again. Last year, we weren’t the Yankees. We had so many injuries and we had so many guys that should have been in there to be lots of anchors. That’s back. There’s not one guy that has to carry this team, but absolutely I expect to hit in the middle of the order, hit 30 home runs and drive in 100 runs. That’s going to take pressure off everybody and help us win games.”
On the offseason: “We had a great offseason. It was fun to watch. I was texting Cash [GM Brian Cashman] every two weeks, telling him congrats on another signing and a great offseason. I basically told him, you did your job, now it’s time for us to do ours. No excuses this year, we have a team that can compete for a world championship.”
On his plan: “We’ve kind of mapped out my whole spring. I’m going to get my 50-plus at-bats in Spring Training. I’m going to get as many swings as I need. It’ll be a little slow the first couple of weeks just to make sure I’m easing into things, but we’re here for six weeks. It’s not like you have a week to get ready for the season. We’re here for six weeks. It’s just a matter of keeping to the schedule.”
On resuming swinging: “I started swinging the first of January, which is when I normally swing. It was 20 swings from each side. Every week it was building up five or 10 swings. Now I’m to the point where I’m swinging about 45, 50 from each side, which is a little bit less than normal. But plenty of swings.”
On the wrist’s stiffness: “You can definitely tell I had surgery, but I had ankle surgery 13 years ago and I can tell I had ankle surgery after 13 years. It’s just something that I’m going to have to make sure that I loosen up and do all the proper rehab and strengthening exercises during the season to make sure that it’s not an issue.”
On if Teixeira still has any doubts: “Of course. I’d be lying if there wasn’t. I said it this winter, everyone can go out after major surgery and go, ‘I’m fine, I’m going to be good as ever,’ but you don’t really know that until you go out there. For me, it’s just kind of two steps: make sure I’m healthy and that means taking full swings at a 95 mph fastball in a Spring Training game. And we have six weeks to figure that out. If that’s the case and I’m healthy and I can do that for a week straight, then it’s all about production. You don’t worry about the injury anymore. Until I have those first couple of games, live Spring Training games, you don’t know exactly how it’s going to respond.”
I had a nice chat with Mark Teixeira recently for a holiday feature about his childhood Christmas memories, a story you can read here. Of course, we also talked a little baseball. Here are some of the highlights:
On the Yankees’ offseason so far:
“I’m really happy with the moves. We had plenty of holes to fill, unfortunately, but when you can go get Brian McCann, Jacoby Ellsbury and Carlos Beltran before Christmas – even guys like Brian Roberts and Kelly Johnson, I think can be huge pickups for us. I’ve played against Brian for 11 years; I’ve played with Kelly in Atlanta, so I know what kind of quality guys they are. They’re going to fit in great with our clubhouse. I think they’re going to do a great job on the field as well. I’m really excited.”
On his rehab from right wrist surgery:
“I’m close to 100 percent. I feel like I’m healed. I wish I was a little bit looser; my wrist is going to be tight for a while because of the way the surgery was performed. They had to kind of tighten everything up to make it secure. It’s still a little bit tight, but that’s why I’m doing rehab every day and doing exercises every day. I’ll start swinging a bat in January and that will also help loosen it up.”
On if there are any doubts about being ready for Opening Day:
“I don’t have any doubts. I have to prove to myself that I’m 100 percent and I hope I’ll be 100 percent next month. You won’t really know until you go out and play that first game in Spring Training. When someone throws a 95 mph fastball in on your hands, if I can turn on that pitch and have no tightness or no pain, then I know I’m OK.”
On his Yankees wishes for 2014:
“I would love for us to round out our pitching staff, both in the starting rotation and the bullpen. If we add a couple more pieces, I think we go into 2014 with a great shot. I know Cash has worked really hard and I give him a lot of credit for what he’s done so far. I wouldn’t mind unwrapping a present after Christmas with a couple more guys on the pitching staff and we’ll be ready to roll.”
On expecting the ’14 Yankees to be a championship-caliber club:
“That’s obvious. Even based on last year, I don’t think anybody’s expectations have changed. I’d be remiss to talk about the last time the Yankees didn’t make the playoffs, what happened in that next season. Hopefully that happens again. I’m very confident that we’re going to go into the season with high hopes and we’ll see what happens.”
Here are the early notes as the Yankees (68-60) and Rays (73-53) prepare to meet under the roof here at Tropicana Field, with CC Sabathia and David Price matching up for the 7:10 p.m. ET start:
Brett Gardner is not in the Yankees’ lineup, but it has nothing to do with his right hand, which was hit last night by a 95 mph Chris Archer fastball. Gardner had X-rays this morning on the hand and they showed no break. Gardner said the hand is a little swollen, but manager Joe Girardi said he wasn’t planning on playing Gardner against the left-hander Price anyway.
Girardi also said he thought Ichiro Suzuki‘s at-bats were good against Price the last time the Yankees saw him.
Derek Jeter is scheduled to play tonight for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre against Pawtucket and then would be in the Yankees’ lineup on Monday at Toronto if everything goes well. The captain went 0-for-3 with a walk and run scored on Friday for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
Girardi’s scouting report on Price: “You look at him three or four years ago and you see he threw 80-85 percent fastballs. But now he’s developed his repertoire. He’s got a curveball, slider a very good backdoor slider to righties. He’s got a very good changeup. He’s just evolved as a pitcher is what he’s done. He’s always had the great fastball but his secondary stuff is now pretty good.”
And what Girardi is looking for from Sabathia tonight: “This is a lineup that if you make mistakes, they’re going to hit the ball out of the ballpark and you got to stay away from the mistakes. Your sinker has to be effective, your changeup has to be effective, and you go from there.”
Girardi was asked if Sabathia’s weight loss might have anything to do with his struggles this season: “I don’t think so. It’s not like he’s 210 pounds. He’s not Mr. [Edwar] Ramirez that we used to have here. He’s still a big man. He’s still strong. I think he’s in tremendous shape.”
Yes, that’s right, there was an Edwar Ramirez reference today. Bet you weren’t counting on hearing anything about the man they called “Flacco.” I do miss watching Mariano Rivera stuff Ramirez into the lockers at the old Stadium.
Two other random thoughts about Ramirez, since my memory has been jogged — Mark Feinsand of the Daily News once made Ramirez cry, asking him about a grand slam that he gave up to Mark Teixeira, who was then with the Angels. Watching Edwar mop his tears with his uniform was just about the saddest thing you can see in a clubhouse. And then there’s the great quote from Kevin Millar about Ramirez: “Cute little fella. That’s good hittin’.”
Other notes — Adam Warren should be available in long relief out of the Yankees’ bullpen. … Lyle Overbay isn’t having a fun trip; he’s still having some flu-like symptoms, and it’s uncertain if he would be available to play tonight. Hey, at least he’s doing better than Chan Ho Park was in Boston. … The Yankees were watching the California/Connecticut Little League World Series game on the clubhouse TVs.
My Beat The Streak pick tonight: Alfonso Soriano. Streak is at zero after Alex Rodriguez went hitless last night.
And we’ll wrap today’s pre-game notes with a Debbie Downer not-so-fun fact for the Yankees: they’re 5-15 in their last 20 games at Tropicana Field dating back to July 21, 2011.
Yankees president Randy Levine said on Tuesday that, even with some key names on the comeback trail, he does expect general manager Brian Cashman to be actively seeking upgrades as the July 31 Trade Deadline approaches.
“We’re the Yankees. We’re always active,” Levine said at a Yankee Stadium press conference to announce a Pinstripe Bowl partnership with the ACC. “We’re always trying to get better. We’ll leave that to Cash to see where the team is, what’s the best move, what do we really need, which players are coming back, when are they coming back. Cash, after talking to Joe [Girardi], will make that decision.”
“I think Hal [Steinbrenner] has said it over and over again, he’s committed to bringing a championship team to the Yankees, to the fans of New York. We’ve been acting the same way for decades. We’ve been banged up, we’ve had a lot of injuries, a lot of tough breaks. The guys out there are fighting, scratching. It’s quite amazing to me that we’re one game behind in the loss column, overcoming all of this. We’re going to do everything we can to try and win.”
Levine also touched on several other topics during a brief exchange with several reporters:
On Alex Rodriguez’s upcoming return:
“I don’t know. I haven’t talked to Cash today or the trainers. All I know is what Cash told me, and I think he told you guys yesterday, that as of last night there was no date for him to begin a rehab assignment. Obviously if he’s getting better and he’s ready to go, the sooner the better, good. But I haven’t heard anything that the clock started or he’s ready to go.”
On the Yankees’ willingness to add payroll for 2014:
“I think Hal has been incredibly clear that $189 [million] is a goal. It’s something that we’re going to look to see if we’re going to accomplish, but the overriding goal is to constantly provide Yankees fans a championship team. I think he said it as well as could be said, and I’m going to repeat what he said, because I think that says it all. That’s a great goal. We don’t know who’s going to be here and not going to be here next year. We’ve got a lot of free agents on this team. There are other events that are going on. We’ll see what happens and hopefully we can accomplish both at the same time, but the overriding goal is – as Hal has said – is to maintain the Yankees’ desire to provide a championship team for Yankee fans all over.”
On Major League Baseball’s investigation into A-Rod and others:
“It doesn’t weigh on our mind. That’s something that’s in the hands of the Commissioner’s Office. They’re investigating it. I’m sure they’ll do a very thorough job. The Players Association is involved in it and it’s out of our control. Something is going to happen or not happen based on the evidence and based on that procedure. We have full confidence in the Commissioner’s Office and Rob Manfred and his team to get to the bottom of this. It’s a factor and it may have an effect on certain players or certain things. It may not. It’s just something that’s a factor that we try to take a look at every factor. Nobody is assuming that anybody is getting suspended. Nobody is assuming that there are any findings. We’re in America and the last I looked, everyone is innocent until evidence is presented against them.”
On if Mark Teixeira’s salary will still be covered by the World Baseball Classic:
“No, the salary reverts to us at the time that he came back. And obviously we have our own insurance on Tex.”
On what would happen if Teixeira needs season-ending surgery:
“Why would I answer that question now? Unless something happened today, we don’t have an answer. We’ll deal with that if and when it happens. But we have pretty good coverage on him, as with a lot of our players.”
The Yankees are bracing for the possibility of more bad news for injured first baseman Mark Teixeira, who was sent to have his right wrist evaluated by team doctors on Tuesday and could be facing season-ending surgery.
Teixeira has not responded well to a cortisone injection that was administered on June 16 to alleviate inflammation in his wrist, which has limited him to just 15 games this season.
“He’s not doing anything. He’s seeing the doctors today and we’ll go from there,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. “I’m concerned. I said before that it’s tricky; what he had was a tricky injury. I’m concerned about it.”
After missing the first two months of the season, Teixeira returned to the Yankees’ lineup on May 31, batting .151 with three home runs and 12 RBIs in 15 games. Teixeira, a switch-hitter, has said that the injury affects him most from the left side of the plate.
“It’s tough not having him, but we were able to win the first month without him,” Yankees outfielder Brett Gardner said. “When we don’t have him, our goal is still to go out there and win.”
Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said on Monday that he is “leaning toward” placing Mark Teixeira on the 15-day disabled list with inflammation in his right wrist.
Teixeira had a cortisone injection in his wrist after removing himself from Saturday’s game against the Angels in Anaheim and, according to the Yankees, would not be available to play for at least seven days.
Lyle Overbay is expected to return to his role as the Yankees’ starting first baseman with Teixeira likely heading for the shelf. The 30 percent chance of season-ending surgery that the Yankees talked about this spring is still very much in play; if it turns out Teixeira can’t return, or would only return as a diminished player, Cashman said that his preference would be for Teixeira to have the surgery.
“Like before the season started, when this injury hit, he’ll either get through it or he’ll have to have surgery,” Cashman said. “The MRI showed no new tear, it’s not a re-injury there; it’s inflammation of the tendon. But is this something that’s a recurring theme because of the previous injury that’s going to prevent him from being all he can be? If that’s the case, he’ll have to have surgery.”
On Kevin Long’s comments in Anaheim that Teixeira never seemed quite right and was unable to perform his left-handed tee work, Cashman said that he was caught off guard because Long had not voiced that opinion in the Yankees’ clubhouse.
“It’s alarming in the fact that K-Long would say that to a group of reporters, but he never said [anything about] that prior,” Cashman said. “… If K-Long said that, he’s a monk because he kept his mouth shut the whole time.”
In other assorted updates:
- Michael Pineda’s next rehab start will come on Thursday for Class-A Tampa. Cashman said that the reports on Pineda have been encouraging; he is sitting around 92 mph with his fastball and has maxed out around 94-95 mph.
- There is no update yet on Kevin Youkilis, as the Yankees are waiting for the results of his doctor’s visit. While disappointed by Youkilis’ injury problems, Cashman said that the Yankees had no second thoughts about signing Youkilis to a one-year, $12 million deal because he passed all of his medical exams. The White Sox, Cashman said, also had offered Youkilis a two-year deal, which gave the Yankees comfort.
- Various updates from Tampa, where Eduardo Nunez did tee and toss, long toss, and took 30 ground balls on the dirt to both sides with throws. He could return before the All-Star break.
- Curtis Granderson did long toss today and is due to have the pin in his hand taken out on Thursday.
- Francisco Cervelli did long toss and receiving drills today. He’s about a week from advancing to underwater swinging and could rejoin the big league team in mid-July.
- Derek Jeter did tee and toss, with 15 cage BP swings, long toss, and took 20 ground balls on the dirt with movement to the side and throws to first base today.
- Alex Rodriguez did a toss & net drill on the field: Three rounds of batting practice on the field, two rounds of “super BP” – up close hitting — and some long toss, ground balls to both sides. He ended with three slow rollers. Tomorrow he’s advancing to simulated at-bats off live pitching.
A few quick updates to share from the Yankees clubhouse as they prepare for tonight’s game against the Rays at Tropicana Field:
- Kevin Youkilis is still having treatment on his sore back and is not expected to play until Thursday at Yankee Stadium. Joe Girardi said they won’t ask Youkilis to come to the bench during tonight’s game so he can keep receiving treatment, but Youkilis’ back is supposedly getting better. He did not appear in the clubhouse this afternoon. The Yankees are again playing Jayson Nix at third base and Lyle Overbay at first base against left-hander David Price.
- Mark Teixeira is still taking only dry swings, and said that his right wrist hasn’t loosened up enough to permit him to move on to batting practice. Teixeira said he feels like the wrist is healed, but acknowledges he won’t make it back for May 1st. Teixeira’s initial time frame of the injury was eight to 10 weeks, so May 1st would’ve been about the earliest possible date, but Teixeira still believes he is on track to play in the big leagues during the month of May.
- Ben Francisco has struggled in his role as the DH against left-handed pitching, but Girardi said that he will stick with him, saying that he believes “Francisco has hit some balls pretty decent.” That said, Girardi acknowledges how much the lineup misses guys like Derek Jeter and Teixeira against lefties.
- Brennan Boesch is likely to be in tomorrow’s lineup as Girardi plans to give Vernon Wells a day off.
- Jeter is expected to rejoin the Yankees on Thursday in New York and will talk to the media at Yankee Stadium. Girardi said that he believes Jeter has been fitted for a walking boot on his left ankle again.
Mark Teixeira returned to Yankees camp on Sunday morning and clarified that the injury he suffered this spring was to his right tendon sheath, which is a similar injury to the one that the Blue Jays’ Jose Bautista had last season.
There had been some confusion because even though GM Brian Cashman said Teixeira and Bautista had similar injuries, the Yankees also said Teixeira’s injury was to the tendon, not the tendon sheath. In any event, Bautista rushed back from the injury and needed surgery, which is a mistake that Teixeira does not intend to repeat.
Teixeira said that while he’d love to be back in the eight to 10 weeks outlined by the Yankees, he also does not want to have a setback like Bautista’s, having learned a lesson from his own nagging calf injury last season. For the first time, Teixeira raised the possibility that he might miss all of May because of the wrist injury.
“This is one of those things I can’t come back too early,” Teixeira said. “We saw when I tried to play too early last year what happened. This is unfortunately, if I try to play too early, we could miss the whole season and we don’t want that. I don’t know if it’s going to be middle of May, end of May, beginning of June. I don’t know when it is, but I know that there’s a whole bunch of season left and the time that really matters is the playoffs.
“We have a great team, we have guys that are going to be able to pick me up when I’m gone. We have guys that can pick Curtis [Granderson] up when he’s gone. I think Curtis and I will be back around the same time and that’ll be a big boost to the club.”