Mark Teixeira might return to lineup Monday night

Mark Teixeira flies out in the fourth inning

Mark Teixeira flies out in the fourth inning against the Seattle Mariners. (Aug. 3, 2012) (Credit: Jim McIsaac)

Mark Teixeira could be back in the Yankees' lineup Monday night when they open a three-game series against the White Sox in Chicago. Even if he is, however, Yankees manager Joe Girardi said it's possible his first baseman's inflamed wrist is something "he has to deal with" for the rest of the season.

Teixeira sat out his third straight game Sunday night against the Boston Red Sox. He originally injured the wrist July 29 after checking his swing against Red Sox starter Felix Doubront. The next day he aggravated the injury while diving for a ball against the Baltimore Orioles. After missing two games and receiving cortisone shots, he returned to play Aug. 2 and played 14 straight games before he was removed from the lineup Friday.

Teixeira said that the recent inflammation is the result of repeatedly swinging the bat the past two weeks. He is hoping that three days of rest is all the injury needs.

"There definitely is improvement," Teixeira said before Sunday night's game. "We just wanted to give it one more day . . . If I do have a bad swing in the game today and we're back to square one, than these last two days didn't help at all. So we're hoping to get it completely taken care of with today's day off."

Girardi, who has had to do a lot of lineup juggling around aches, pains and injuries this season, is taking a wait-and-see attitude when it comes to putting Teixeira back on the field Monday night.

"I think it's a possibility that he could have to deal with this the rest of the year, and I think it's a possibility that it could be gone, too," Girardi said. "I'm not really going to know until he goes through it and how effective the treatment is.

"If I had a 20-game lead, I probably wouldn't play him for a week. But I don't have a 20-game lead. If I had clinched a playoff spot, I'd probably give him a week, but people have to play beat-up in this game."

There's no doubt that the Yankees could use him back in their lineup. Teixeira is hitting .257 with 23 home runs and a team-leading 78 RBIs.

He did not participate in batting practice before the game, though he did spend some time fielding grounders at first base while wearing his compression brace.

Teixeira certainly does not want his wrist to become a recurring problem.

"I hope not," he said. "That's why we're taking the time now. And the reason that we wanted to take a few days off is I don't want it to linger, we don't want it to linger, especially something like a wrist, where as a power hitter, I need my wrist, I need my hands, and if it does linger, then it's not going to help anybody out, it's not going to help me out or the team."

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