Tag:Mark Teixeira
Posted on: June 8, 2011 5:20 pm
Edited on: June 8, 2011 5:55 pm

Teixeira plays, many others don't

NEW YORK -- Mark Teixeira did it.

He made it back into the Yankee lineup Wednesday, a day after taking a 90-mph Jon Lester cutter to his right knee and going down in so much pain that most watching feared he had broken his kneecap.

"It feels really good," Teixeira said, before adding more realistically, "The pain is still there, but it's tolerable."

Teixeira played Wednesday, but Russell Martin didn't. Yankee manager Joe Girardi said that Martin's back locked up after Tuesday's game.

The Yankees were also without Joba Chamberlain, who went on the disabled list with a flexor tendon strain.

And the Red Sox were without Jed Lowrie, who had an MRI on his sore shoulder/back, and Jarrod Saltalamacchia, who was sick. Saltalamacchia's absence forced the Red Sox to use Jason Varitek to catch Tim Wakefield, which he almost never does, and it also forced the Sox to make a roster move to add a catcher. Bobby Jenks, who left Tuesday's game when his back tightened up, went on the disabled list, and Luis Exposito was called up from Triple-A Pawtucket.

And meanwhile, Mark Teixeira was back in the Yankee lineup.

Posted on: June 7, 2011 7:43 pm
Edited on: June 7, 2011 11:21 pm

Yankees get scare as Teixeira hit on knee

NEW YORK -- The Yankees feared that they had lost Mark Teixeira for weeks, if not months.

By late Tuesday night, Teixeira was talking about trying to play Wednesday against the Red Sox.

His right knee, hit in the first inning Tuesday by a 90 mph Jon Lester cutter, wasn't broken, as he and others had initially feared. His knee wasn't even wrapped as he stood in the middle of the Yankee clubhouse after a 6-4 loss to the Red Sox that could have been so much worse.

"There's certain guys you can't go without," Alex Rodriguez said. "There's some guys that are irreplaceable."

He was talking about Teixeira, second in the majors with 18 homers (including six in the last 10 games before Tuesday).

The Yankees had reason to fear. The pitch hit Teixeira squarely on his back knee. Worse yet, Teixeira went directly to the ground, screaming out in pain.

"My concern was that he had fractured his kneecap," manager Joe Girardi admitted. Teix has been hit a lot, and I've never seen him show that much pain before. He was in a lot of pain, and that was scary."

Teixeira said he feared the same thing, but that he was lucky that the ball hit between the kneecap and the side of the knee.

"It actually hit me in a lucky place," he said.

And yes, he was talking about playing Wednesday.

"If I'm all right to go, I'm going to go," he said.

Just another crazy night with the Yankees and Red Sox, a night that also included Sox reliever Bobby Jenks leaving with a stiff back, and with Girardi admitting that he wasn't happy that David Ortiz flipped his bat after a fifth-inning home run.

"I didn't really care for it," Girardi said.
Category: MLB
Posted on: April 15, 2011 1:13 pm

3 thoughts to end a busy week

What a week in baseball. Two MVPs head to the DL, and another is now a felon. And the guy who was many people's pick to be this year's MVP gets a huge (if totally expected, and already widely reported) contract.

We dealt with Josh Hamilton and Barry Bonds earlier in the week . Now a few quick thoughts on Joe Mauer and Adrian Gonzalez, and a bonus thought on Phil Hughes:

1. In Fort Myers last month, Twins people seemed convinced that Mauer would be fine. There were even suggestions that Mauer could have caught earlier in the spring than he did, but that he didn't want to wear himself out (I even heard a Brett Favre reference). Mauer said then that he caught as soon as he could, and also suggested he might need more time off than usual in April.

Now he's on the disabled list with what the Twins described as bilateral leg weakness, and it doesn't sound good, does it? The Twins figure to know a lot more after Mauer visits a specialist, but that visit has been delayed because Mauer was too sick to fly.

It's worth noting that the last time Mauer went to visit this specialist, he missed the first month of the 2009 season and still won the MVP and led the Twins to the playoffs. It's also worth noting, as Tom Verducci does at SI.com , that more Mauer injuries will bring back the debate of whether he should continue to catch.

That's a legitimate question, but a large part of the reason that Mauer is so valuable (and that the Twins gave him an eight-year, $184 million contract) is that he is a catcher. On any given night, Mauer gives the Twins a huge offensive edge over any opponent's catcher (and a huge edge over anyone else the Twins would catch). As a first baseman, say, how does he match up against Gonzalez, or against Miguel Cabrera?

I remember former Indians general manager Mark Shapiro making exactly that argument when the Tribe left Victor Martinez behind the plate, even while many were calling for him to play first base (albeit because of his poor defense, rather than health concerns).

2. It's hard to get excited about Gonzalez's seven-year, $154 million extension, simply because the probable extension (and even the basic contract terms) were reported back when Gonzalez was traded to the Red Sox in December.

But it's still a huge deal, with the biggest annual salary the Red Sox have ever paid a player.

Gonzalez should thank Mark Teixeira, and not just because Teixeira's $22.5 million a year contract seems to have set a standard that Gonzalez (who signed for $22 million a year) has basically matched.

Remember, the Red Sox tried hard to sign Teixeira when he was a free agent after the 2008 season. They made a huge offer, reported to be more than $21 million a season, and Red Sox people thought they were going to get him right up to the moment he signed with the Yankees.

If the Red Sox had signed Teixeira, who as a free agent would have cost them only money, they don't trade for Gonzalez, no matter how well suited his swing supposedly is for Fenway Park.

3. Plenty of people (including many rival scouts) were expecting the Yankees to pull Phil Hughes from the rotation after two terrible, velocity-deficient starts to begin the season. Now that it's three ugly starts, it's even harder to imagine that the Yankees will continue starting Hughes.

Yankee history says they won't. According to research through baseball-reference.com 's great play index feature, no pitcher in Yankee history (since 1919, anyway) has started the year in the rotation and stayed there after failing to finish the fifth inning in any of his first three starts (as Hughes now has).

With off days next Monday and Thursday, the Yankees could get by with four starters until April 26. But as Yankee officials said before Hughes poor start against the Orioles on Thursday, if Hughes isn't hurt, the best way for him to build arm strength (and theoretically build velocity) is to keep pitching.

In that case, Hughes may be better served by a trip to the minor leagues.

Posted on: October 15, 2009 3:12 pm
Edited on: October 15, 2009 4:05 pm

Teixeira, Hunter meet again -- in ALCS

NEW YORK -- Torii Hunter tried to convince Mark Teixeira to stay with the Angels. It didn't work.

But when Teixeira left to join the Yankees as a free agent, he told Hunter that they'd meet again -- in the American League Championship Series.

Teixeira says the conversation took place in December, when he called to tell Hunter that he'd be signing with New York. Hunter remembers it taking place early this season, when the Angels were at Yankee Stadium.

"I was at first base, and he told me, 'We'll see you in the ALCS,' " Hunter said. "It's true."


Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said the Angels are "happy they're playing us" and also said that in a way, the Angels "look down on us" because of their success against the Yankees over recent years.

Angels general manager Tony Reagins doesn't buy it.

"There's so much respect," Reagins said. "We knew we'd have to beat the best to be where we want to be. They're a real good ballclub. There's a lot of respect. We're not looking down at them in any way."

Hunter was also surprised to hear Cashman's comments.

"He said that?" Hunter asked. 'I'm just happy to be here. We were happy to play the Red Sox [in the first round], too. We're happy to play anybody."

And no surprise, but Angels manager Mike Scioscia said it's never easy playing the Yankees.

"I don't think there's been any dominance," Scioscia said. "They have the respect of everyone in our clubhouse."


While the Angels are 2 for 2 in playoff series against the Yankees, Hunter is 0 for 2, with his Twins losing in the first round in both 2003 and 2004. Hunter hit .387 in the two series.

"Everywhere I go, we play the Yankees," he said. "Now I feel we've really got that chance. I really think we have a shot to get it done."

Hunter described the Yankees as having "a $10 billion payroll," whereas he said of the Twins, "We had no chance. We made minimum wage."


A couple of pre-ALCS numbers to note:

-- The Angels (48-33) and the Yankees (46-35) were the only two American League teams with winning records on the road this year.

-- While the Angels and Yankees split the 10 games in their regular-season series, the Angels outscored the Yankees 65-55 in the 10 games.

Posted on: June 18, 2009 12:51 pm
Edited on: June 18, 2009 12:53 pm

Sox fans still have Teixeira on their minds

The day after I wrote a column wondering how good the Red Sox would have been had they signed Mark Teixeira (as they badly wanted to), a Red Sox official told me the same subject had come up in a casual conversation in their office.

Sox fans, apparently, don't agree with me or with their own front office. And they let me know.

From Desa: "This is the best you can come up with after my Sox go 7-0 up on the Yankees? Making up stories about what might have been? Sure, signing Teixeira would have been nice at the right price but the core of the Sox is the farm system, not the free-agent market."

Good points, except that the Sox also tried very hard to sign Teixeira, and considered him the one player they most wanted on last winter's market.

From Steve: "I doubt they miss him, sure his numbers are great. But by all accounts he is not a good clubhouse team member. Look at the NYY dynasty, they were gamers and won 4 championships the went after big name clubhouse cancers. Nothing since. Red Sox are similiar to the that dynasty, not the prettiest but play well as a TEAM. You generally can't buy a title in sports. So I doubt Tex is being missed as much as you say. Arrogant pains are never missed."

Funny how it works in Boston (and most everywhere else). Had Teixeira signed with the Red Sox, he'd have been a perfect fit on a perfect team. But he signed with the Yankees, so he's an arrogant pain.

From Andy: "In 8 years, Teixiera will be bloated, old and over-paid. Just like Giambi was last year. Once again, the Yankees are undone by their gluttony and greed -- and once again they prove why they so well represent everything that is wrong with our country."

And David Ortiz is in top form as he reaches the end of his contract.

There was more on Teixeira, too, this time on the column I wrote after the first game of last weekend's Subway Series.

From Rick: "I hate the Yankees or Bankees, however, Teixeira is killing the ball and they have been good. Nice article, you are right, Tex waddles around the bases and the drop by Castillo is meaningless."

How many players would have run as hard as Teixeira did on the dropped popup? I still say fewer than half. One scout told me yesterday he thinks it's not even close to half, and that almost a week later he's still talking about what Teixeira did. That's a sad commentary on modern baseball, but a great compliment for Teixeira.

Mets fans, by the way, didn't like the column detailing all the crazy losses this year:

From Anahid: "The fans can forget the losses - apparently you cannot. I've followed the Mets since my Dad took me to my first game in 1962. Are we having a tough year - you bet! Are we overcoming it - yes! With as many injuries as we have had, we shouldn't be anywhere near 4 over 500.Why can't you celebrate the fact that we are overcoming adversity, instead of trying to put us down?"

So true Mets fans can forget the losses? Fine, but that means the 40,000 who show up at Citi Field every night ready to boo at the first hint of a mistake must be untrue Mets fans.

Oh, and guess what? Phillies fans aren't happy, either, after yesterday's column on the Phils' struggles to win at home.

From James: "Hey Danny,why aren't they winning? -- They're in first place in the NL East ahead of your New York Chokers. They have the best road record in the game. How bout a positive Phils article once and a while? Your bias is sickening, and you will eat your words just like last October. See you then, Mr. New York."

James, meet Anahid. Anahid, meet James.

And finally, from Rick: "I'm a Phillie fan transplanted to Raleigh, NC. But, if it were my guess, knowing the fan mentality in Phil., the teams all of them are wrapped too tight when they play in town and don't play as loose relaxed as they need, which is essential for high level performance in any field. Also, in the case of the world champion Phillies, lack of focus, due to non-baseball commitments. What do you think?"

I think that when you moved to North Carolina, you gained some perspective. I also think that since the Phillies have annually had good home records, this year's record is harder to explain. And that probably means that by the end of the season, the Phils will have won more at home than they've lost.

Category: MLB
Posted on: December 23, 2008 4:17 pm
Edited on: December 23, 2008 4:38 pm

Yanks sign Teixeira for 8 years, $180 million

After all that, Mark Teixeira is going to be a Yankee.

Two weeks after signing CC Sabathia, who was their top winter target, the Yankees have agreed to terms with Teixeira, the Red Sox's top winter target. Teixeira will sign an eight-year, $180 million deal, according to a source with knowledge of the negotiations.

Teixeira's contract will include a full no-trade clause, but it will not include the opt-out clause that the Yankees used to lure Sabathia.

While the Yankees told everyone how much they wanted Sabathia, they kept their pursuit of Teixeira a lot quieter. As late as Tuesday morning, the Red Sox believed that Teixeira was choosing between them and the Nationals.

The Sox were also offering an eight-year deal, which sources say was for about $170 million.

But it turned out the Yankees were never out of it, and given a chance to sign the player regarded as the top position player available on the market, the Yankees pounced.

By mid-afternoon, the Yankees had a deal. Because the deal is subject to a physical, the Yankees aren't expected to announce it for several days.

Teixeira's decision to go to New York is a stunning blow to the Red Sox. Not only did they believe that Teixeira was the perfect player to add to the middle of their lineup -- in effect replacing Manny Ramirez and protecting David Ortiz -- but they never really had a viable backup plan. No other position player available, either as a free agent or on the trade market, can give the Sox what Teixeira would have.

Well, one guy could, but we all know there's no chance of Ramirez returning to Boston.

According to sources familiar with the Red Sox's plans, the Sox aren't likely to react to the Teixeira news by stepping up their pursuit of Derek Lowe or any other top starting pitcher. The Red Sox never regarded the Teixeira pursuit as having an effect on their interest in Lowe.

One player who could potentially be affected is catcher Jason Varitek. Now that the Red Sox weren't able to add Teixeira, they may try even harder to get more offense out of the catcher spot.

As for Ramirez, it's not clear where Teixeira's decision leaves him. The Angels have been telling people that they're not interested, and it's unclear how much money Dodgers owner Frank McCourt is willing to spend.

Would Ramirez, who has always played on winning teams, be willing to go to Washington?

Or how about the Yankees? Could they sign Ramirez, too?

No, they won't. That one, we should be able to count them out of.


Category: MLB
Posted on: December 23, 2008 1:42 pm
Edited on: December 23, 2008 2:46 pm

Red Sox, Nats still waiting on Teixeira, Yanks

The Mark Teixeira derby appears to have come down to the Red Sox and the Nationals, and while Teixeira doesn't appear to have decided yet, the teams are expecting a decision today, according to sources.

The Nationals are believed to be offering more money, as well as a chance for Teixeira to play near his native Maryland. The Red Sox offer a much better chance to win.

The Yankees had been involved with Teixeira, but barring a last-minute change, they don't appear to be a finalist. The same goes for the Orioles, as well as the Angels, who made public their withdrawal from the negotiations on Sunday.

Category: MLB
Posted on: December 23, 2008 1:41 pm

Red Sox, Nats still waiting on Teixeira

The Mark Teixeira derby appears to have come down to the Red Sox and the Nationals, and while Teixeira doesn't appear to have decided yet, the teams are expecting a decision today, according to sources.

The Nationals are believed to be offering more money, as well as a chance for Teixeira to play near his native Maryland. The Red Sox offer a much better chance to win.

The Yankees had been involved with Teixeira, but barring a last-minute change, they don't appear to be a finalist. The same goes for the Orioles, as well as the Angels, who made public their withdrawal from the negotiations on Sunday.

Category: MLB
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