The situation just keeps getting worse for the Yankees dwindling lineup.
Mark Teixeira’s injury is more severe than originally hoped. Instead of eight to 10 days, Teixeira will miss eight to 10 weeks with a strained right wrist. He will sit out the next four weeks with no activity before beginning a rehab program. General manager Brian Cashman said there will be no surgery.
It’s the latest blow to a team that’s already lost Curtis Granderson to a broken forearm. Those two are actually expected to return at roughly the same time. Early May seems to be a good guess. Of the eight Yankees who hit more than 15 home runs last season, only one — Robinson Cano — is both healthy and still on the Yankees roster.
As for how to fill the hole at first base, the Yankees aren’t sure.
• Both Cashman and Joe Girardi downplayed the idea of moving Kevin Youkilis to first base. Youkilis has been a good defensive first baseman in the past, but Cashman believes it would be harder to find a third baseman than a first baseman (the Yankees are still hesitant to use Eduardo Nunez at third).
• Travis Hafner is not an option. Cashman said he knew what he was getting when he signed Hafner, and what he was getting didn’t include a glove. Hafner is here to DH, and only DH.
• Juan Rivera played first base for the Dodgers last season, and Girardi indicated that he could be an option in some capacity, but Cashman said he thinks of Rivera primarily as an outfielder.
• Dan Johnson has spent significant time at first base, and Girardi said he’ll likely give Johnson more first base starts through the rest of spring training. The Yankees originally wanted to test Johnson at third, but it seems first has become the priority with him.
• As always, Cashman said he’ll keep looking for players being discarded from other teams, but he cautioned that this time of year, it’s hard to find true impact players. Teams are usually looking to dump their garbage, not making a significant move.
Associated Press photo