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Mark Teixeira expects to feel stiffness in his wrist for most of the season

Jan 29, 2014, 11:33 AM EDT

Mark Teixeira AP

One of the big “ifs” for the Yankees is “if Mark Teixeira” can return as an effective hitter. Daniel Barbarisi of the Wall Street Journal caught up with him and, while he has no pain in his wrist and the doctors say everything is healing correctly, he is still stiff and expects to be for some time:

Teixeira’s doctors have told him that it will take a year for the wrist to feel fully normal, and that the tightness will likely remain throughout. It should improve, however, with every therapy session he completes and every swing he takes.

“I’m expecting until June, and maybe even through this entire season, it’ll be a little tight,” Teixeira said.

This article drops the old “time will tell” chestnut, but that’s just a slightly more optimistic way to phrase “we have no freakin’ idea.” And it suggests that, while most players can get away without being effective in spring training because they’re “getting their work in” or whatever, watching Teixeira in Tampa this year is going to be a lot more important.

  1. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Jan 29, 2014 at 11:47 AM

    Meanwhile, the Angels have just signed every reserve 1B type in the universe, while the Yankees backup plan for Mark is….? Wouldn’t a Carlos Pena type guy on a minor league deal make a ton of sense for this team?

    • jcmeyer10 - Jan 29, 2014 at 11:52 AM

      Sabathiawouldbegoodatfirsttoo :D

    • tuucamaron - Jan 29, 2014 at 12:00 PM

      Last year we had overbay at first and the angels had overpaid at first

      • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Jan 29, 2014 at 12:05 PM

        The Angels apparently learned their lesson, while the Yankees seem content to sit back with their hopes and prayers for health

    • fanofevilempire - Jan 29, 2014 at 1:05 PM

      There is no need for Yankee fans to panic about a sour wrist and a backup @ first base for Tex, by the time camp breaks and head North the roster should be built out and most questions
      concerning the infield will be addressed. Maybe a minor league guy can catch on, who knows.
      I see no need to get a heart attack @ the moment.

      • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Jan 29, 2014 at 1:20 PM

        I spent all of 2013 trying to convince myself that Lyle Overbay was pretty good. He wasn’t. If Teixeira was the only questions mark I would not be terribly concerned. There are, however, a ton of questions here and not too many answers. At this point I suppose McCann is the reserve 1B, which leaves Cervelli as the defacto Teixeira replacement. Not good. For the price of a minor league deal I hope the Yankees find someone a little bit more capable with the stick to hold in reserve.

      • spudchukar - Jan 29, 2014 at 1:35 PM

        Since it is Texeria’s right wrist, he should be less affected when hitting left-handed. Which is good news for the Yanks, but should be a hint that a right-handed alternative would be most prudent, and minimizes the possibility that McCann, who has never played a game at first, or Johnson who are lefties.

    • badsequel - Jan 29, 2014 at 4:21 PM

      What will the Yanks give for Pena? Got any decent young arms?

      • jerseyjoehaven - Jan 29, 2014 at 7:21 PM

        Pena is a free agent

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jan 29, 2014 at 8:51 PM

        He just signed a MiLB with the Angels the other day.

    • metroplexsouthsider - Jan 29, 2014 at 5:26 PM

      Have fun with those playoff hopes, Yankees fans.

  2. anxovies - Jan 29, 2014 at 11:54 AM

    Maybe the stiff wrist will force him to hit to left field when the Yanks need a runner and the shift is on.

    • fanofevilempire - Jan 29, 2014 at 1:38 PM

      sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo, I agree with you but we just have to wait, the Yanks won’t any move until they see what they have in camp.

  3. tuucamaron - Jan 29, 2014 at 11:58 AM

    Tex with a stiff wrist should be better than overbay at 100%

  4. twenty1miles - Jan 29, 2014 at 11:58 AM

    In other words, see you in 2015 Tex. Sigh..

  5. spudchukar - Jan 29, 2014 at 12:11 PM

    I cannot remember which wrist ails Tex, but he should be able to play through the side where his “pull” hand is “stiff”. However, whichever side isn’t look for a serious downgrade.

    • Jack Marshall - Jan 29, 2014 at 6:36 PM

      Dream on. Wrists and shoulders are ground zero for sluggers. And the stunning thing is that Tex still appears to be the BEST of the Yankee’s question marks in the infield. But all that spending definitely made them a contender, right?

      This is a good time to find out which of the Yankee fans in your life have a grip on reality.

  6. scoutsaysweitersisabust - Jan 29, 2014 at 12:15 PM

    The headline brings out the childish humorist in me.

  7. rbj1 - Jan 29, 2014 at 12:18 PM

    Well this is shaping up to be a not good season.

    • pastabelly - Jan 29, 2014 at 1:01 PM

      Stop whining. Your team just signed Tanaka, McCann, Ellsbury, and Beltran. Fans of every other team weep for your plight.

      • cackalackyank - Jan 29, 2014 at 1:17 PM

        Nah the fans of the teams whose owners just pocket the cash and don’t try to win don’t bother with such things. Its when fans know their team is trying to win that they start to care, and form opinions and stuff like that.

      • Jack Marshall - Jan 29, 2014 at 6:38 PM

        How do you figure? The purpose of the game is “winning,” not “see how many high-priced free agents you can sign without having a realistic shot at the play-offs.”

  8. uyf1950 - Jan 29, 2014 at 12:20 PM

    Has been a rather slow week in baseball news and Yankee news that makes reporting Teixeira’s wrist might be stiff for quite some time one of the headlines. But I guess after signing FA’s the likes of: McCann, Ellsbury, Beltran and Tanaka along with re-signing Kuroda and some lesser FA’s, Tex and his surgically repaired wrist are one of the highlights of the morning.

    • spudchukar - Jan 29, 2014 at 12:38 PM

      UYF, my friend, it just reinforces the fact that even with the McCann, Ellsbury, Beltran and Tanaka signings the Yanks are still rife with holes, and illustrates how fragile New York is, and how many more acquisitions are needed, even in a slow week.

      • 18thstreet - Jan 29, 2014 at 12:54 PM

        Nah, they’re fine. Just like last year, when they needed a left fielder. They found one in Vernon Wells. And when that didn’t work out and they needed another left fielder, they found one in Alfonzo Soriano.

        The Yankees should follow precedent and trade for Ryan Howard.

      • uyf1950 - Jan 29, 2014 at 1:07 PM

        My friend sometimes I wonder if you wait for me to post something just so you can reply with a comment. Whatever holes the Yankees may or may not have whether perceived or real I trust the Yankees will do everything possible to field the best team they can.

        Besides if the Yankees didn’t have at least one issue/problem like a player(s) over 35 or one of the top 2 payrolls in baseball or a “hole or holes” to fill what would non Yankees fans have to talk or complain about. If the Yankees addressed every perceived problem fans think they have they would be doing a disservice to the other 29 teams fans. And what would sites like HBT and MLBTR and a host of other sites do with all the blank space they would have to fill.

        Have a good day.

      • spudchukar - Jan 29, 2014 at 1:14 PM

        Sorry, UYF, my friend, you seem somewhat defensive today. Good luck finding sympathy for unwarranted attention to the Yankees. Do you feel your team is”picked on”? Pretty sure it goes with the territory.

        As to “waiting for you to post so I can reply”, I have to admit guilt. I recently installed a device on my computer, that alerts me every time you post. It is the theme song to the hit HBO series “Getting On”.

      • stex52 - Jan 29, 2014 at 1:16 PM

        Hey, you guys really are friends, aren’t you?? Don’t burst my bubble. :-)

      • spudchukar - Jan 29, 2014 at 1:22 PM

        As real as virtual friends can be.

      • 18thstreet - Jan 29, 2014 at 2:15 PM

        I really like how UFY always uses “my friend.” Makes me feel like I’m talking to John McCain. I like it.

    • cackalackyank - Jan 29, 2014 at 12:56 PM

      UYF, slow week or not, the lack of a credible back up to Tex has been something of note for awhile now. In no case was he EVER going to play 162. First Chavez, then Reynolds, then Overbay signed elsewhere. Wells was released. Kelly Johnson can only be at one place in the field at a time. I feel there has to be someone in the Minors they think is going to fill in., or maybe they have super high hopes in Sizemore. In any case there has to be some concern.

      • fanofevilempire - Jan 29, 2014 at 1:08 PM

        Yankees don’t trade for players that are breaking down like Howard anymore.
        But thanks for the concern.

      • cackalackyank - Jan 29, 2014 at 1:11 PM

        foe not really sure what your comment has to do with mine, but getting Ryan Howard is the last thing I would suggest.

      • uyf1950 - Jan 29, 2014 at 1:25 PM

        @ cackalackyank, my friend relax. I’m sure the Yankees are well aware of the situation at 1st base. There is more then enough time to address the back up situation at 1st base. ST hasn’t even begun that’s when most of these secondary issues normally get resolved.. I’m sure they will test a host of potential invitees at 1st base and there are always players that are cut from other teams during ST that are available. Remember Lyle Overbay wasn’t signed by the Yankees until March 22, 2013 that’s just one example of a late ST signing to fill a need. Also Russ Canzler, while not fans 1st choice as a back up he can be serviceable, was signed to a minor league deal back a month or 2 ago. He has 1st base experience. Just because we don’t hear or recognize the names that doesn’t mean there aren’t options or that options won’t be available if need be in a pinch. Keep the faith my friend.

      • dylanthom2013 - Jan 29, 2014 at 4:29 PM

        Why not Jeff Baker? He was a great backup for us (Rangers) last year and I hope we re-sign him. Solid RH-bat, can play multiple positions aside from 1B so he can fill in for not just Teix but a lot of other guys when they need a break. etc. Would be a good versatile cost-effective addy etc.

  9. nymets4ever - Jan 29, 2014 at 12:33 PM

    Wilmer Flores is blocked at 3rd by David Wright, doesn’t have the footwork for the middle infield, and the Mets seem committed to some combination of Lucas Duda/Ike Davis/Josh Satin at 1st.

    He has a high ceiling with the bat, but no obvious path with the Mets. They could trade him to the Yankees for one of their promising outfield prospects, some of whom have been blocked by Ellsbury and Gardner…

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jan 29, 2014 at 1:00 PM

      Does a guy with a .331 career OBP (5.2%BB) in the MiLB over almost 3000 PA really have a high upside with the bat?

  10. Old Gator - Jan 29, 2014 at 12:55 PM

    I’m thirty years older than Teixeira and if my wrist were the only place I expected to feel stiffness all season, I would make sure my estate was in order and swallow my mother in law’s British cooking.

    • stex52 - Jan 29, 2014 at 1:18 PM

      I resemble that remark, Gator.

    • spudchukar - Jan 29, 2014 at 2:18 PM

      MML.

      • spudchukar - Jan 29, 2014 at 2:27 PM

        Playin’ a little “Junkies” in honor of the last Gator post.

      • Old Gator - Jan 29, 2014 at 2:41 PM

        Keeping with the spirit of my post, I suggest you play “Follower 2″ from the End of Paths Taken CD.

      • spudchukar - Jan 29, 2014 at 3:03 PM

        Right now I’m more in a “Common Disaster” place, maybe later.

    • dirtyharry1971 - Jan 29, 2014 at 9:01 PM

      then why don’t you do what old brits do like go play bridge or something?

  11. drelms - Jan 29, 2014 at 10:57 PM

    Maybe if he stops jerking off his wrist will heal faster

  12. ejannetta - Jan 30, 2014 at 9:18 AM

    Anyone know the Over/Under line as to whether Tex goes on the DL before the season starts.

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