The New York Yankees’ American League East division hopes took a severe blow on Friday when GM Brian Cashman told reporters, including Marc Feinsand of the New York Daily News, that an MRI revealed a fracture in Mark Teixeira’s right shin.
Latest tests show fracture in Teixeira’s leg. He’s done for the season.
— Mark Feinsand (@FeinsandNYDN) September 11, 2015
Teixeira, 35, originally suffered the injury when he fouled a ball off his shin on August 17. Despite being able to play in two games after he got hurt, the injury proved to be a lot worse than originally thought. The slugging switch-hitter had been on crutches since last week and did not seem to be progressing.
Probably the Yankees’ most consistent offensive contributor this year, Teixeira’s absence will force the rest of the lineup to step up. In 111 games, Teixeira hit .255 with 31 HR and 79 RBI, a tremendous bounce-back year for a player who was mired with injury woes for much of the past three years. Not only did Teixeira lead the Yankees’ offensive charge, the five-time Gold Glove winner maintained his reputation of outstanding defense.
While he may be done for the remainder of this season, Teixeira should be ready to go in Spring Training. Jack Curry of the YES Network added that Teixeira’s estimated recovery time is three months, giving him plenty of time to rehab his latest ailment.
Cashman just told reporters at Stadium that Teixeira is done for the season. The latest MRI showed a fracture. Recovery time is 3 months. — Jack Curry (@JackCurryYES) September 11, 2015
Since Teixeira went down with the injury, the Yankees’ have trotted out rookie first baseman Greg Bird in his place. The 22-year-old has been good overall but has also experienced some tough times. Through 25 games since being called up, Bird has hit .241 with five HR and 17 RBI. Among his productive performances have been a two-home run outing against the Minnesota Twins and a go-ahead HR against Baltimore Orioles earlier in the week.
But his defense has left a lot to be desired as Teixeira is one of the premier defenders at any position in baseball. Bird is seen as a potential long-term solution at first base, but it will likely not happen until 2017. Teixeira is still under contract for one more season in 2016, a season in which he will make $22.5 million. He originally signed his seven-year, $180 million deal with the Yankees prior to the 2009 season.
After 2016, the Yankees will no longer have a long-term fixture at first base — which is when Bird may take the reigns as full-time first baseman.
In addition to Teixeira, the Yankees will be without starter Nathan Eovaldi (14-3, 4.20 ERA) for the rest of the regular season, as Cashman told reporters earlier in the week. Without their slugging first baseman and team leader in wins, the Yankees face an uphill climb to get back into the AL East race.
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