Mark Teixeira hurts wrist as Yankees lose to Orioles

Mark Teixeira reacts after injuring his wrist in

Mark Teixeira reacts after injuring his wrist in the seventh inning against the Baltimore Orioles. (July 30, 2012) (Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

Losing for the eighth time in 11 games shouldn't induce panic. Not with the comfortable lead the Yankees still enjoy in the AL East.

Adding another regular to the expanding list of the injured, however, is cause for concern.

Monday night it was Mark Teixeira going down, with the first baseman leaving the 5-4 loss to the Orioles at the Stadium after aggravating his injured left wrist in the seventh inning.

"We'll keep our fingers crossed,'' Joe Girardi said of the MRI Teixeira will undergo Tuesday. "It's a big concern. Hopefully, it's only a couple of days.''

The switch-hitting Teixeira, wearing a soft cast when he emerged in the clubhouse after the game, had X-rays that came back negative.

He said he initially tweaked the wrist the night before in his third at-bat against Boston lefthander Felix Doubront, and that he aggravated it Monday when he hit the ground after diving for J.J. Hardy's RBI single in the seventh-inning.

Teixeira said he expects to miss a couple of days but isn't worried about a long-term injury. The Yankees, of course, have had plenty of those -- Mariano Rivera, Andy Pettitte and Alex Rodriguez being the most prominent.

"Low,'' Teixeira of his level of concern that the MRI will show something serious. "I played the rest of the game [Sunday], I played today.

"I've popped a hamstring before where you go down and you're out of the game. Popped an oblique before where as soon as you swing, you go down and you're out of the game. This is something I tried to play through and it's more achy and sore than major pain, and that's why I feel OK about it. Hopefully, it's not too bad.''

It isn't immediately clear if the injury will impact general manager Brian Cashman's thinking before Tuesday's's 4 p.m. non-waivers trade deadline. Cashman has been monitoring the market, though not aggressively, primarily looking at pitching depth and help at third with A-Rod on the DL, but only if the prices are right.

Before the game, Cashman didn't sound optimistic that he'd make any moves beyond last week's deal to get Ichiro, but that was before his first basemen went down for an undetermined amount of time. If the MRI comes back with something dire, Cashman could have a busy afternoon before the clock strikes 4.

On the current roster, Nick Swisher, who hasn't played the field since July 20 when he left the game with a left hip flexor strain, can play first base. So can Eric Chavez.

But again, Teixeira didn't think he'll be out long.

"Not crazy concerned,'' Teixeira said. "It's one of those things if you really hurt yourself bad, you're out and you really can't do much. I was kind of nursing it today. Hopefully, it's just a couple of days."

The Yankees (60-42) saw their lead in the AL East "trimmed'' to 6 1/2 games over the Orioles. Ten of their last 11 games have been decided by three runs or fewer, with six of the games being decided by one run. They're 0-6 in those games.

"It's been tough, a lot of close ballgames,'' Chavez said. "Our offense has been kind of sputtering a little bit. We have to find a way to swing the bats a little more consistently.''

The Yankees hit three homers off Orioles rookie righthander Miguel Gonzalez, solo shots by Raul Ibañez, Chavez and Ichiro, his first as a Yankee. The latter two came back to back in the seventh and brought the Yankees to within 5-4.

Jim Johnson earned his 31st save with a scoreless, though hardly drama-free, ninth.

Swisher led off with a double and Ramiro Peña ran for him. Ibañez struck out and Chavez walked to bring up Ichiro. The outfielder, who has hits in all seven games since joining the Yankees, grounded into a 6-4 force play, putting runners at the corners with two outs. After Ichiro stole second, Russell Martin struck out to end it.

"You'd be more concerned if you were getting pounded,'' Girardi said of his team's slump. "We've had a chance to win a lot of those eight of 11 games, so you get yourself in enough of those opportunities, you're going to start to win them.''

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