The Yankees’ front office must wince any time Mark Teixeira so much as sneezes.
In the latter part of his career, the 36-year-old first baseman has become known just as much for his inability to avoid the disabled list as for his power bat and solid glove.
Teixeira fouled a ball off his left foot in Saturday’s 5-2 loss to the Red Sox but stayed in the game in hopes of playing in Sunday night’s series finale, which turned out to be a 3-1 win.
But there’s never a guarantee with Teixeira’s health. Instead of suiting up and playing, he was taken for tests.
“We took X-rays [Saturday] night. Those came back fine,” manager Joe Girardi said. “He was sore today. He’s getting a CT scan at 5:30; we’ll know more obviously, probably, by 6:30.”
Results of the CT scan were negative, but Girardi said Teixeira could “be out a few days” because of soreness.
A handful of Yankees have seen time at first base this season. While there’s usually strength in numbers, the options provide little assurance.
Brian McCann has the most experience with 29 career games, followed by Rob Refsnyder (16), Chase Headley (10), Austin Romine (four), Alex Rod riguez (two) and Carlos Beltran (one).
Refsnyder, who received the start Sunday night, admitted that there’s still much for him to learn.
“The biggest thing is just getting game reps,” he said. “I’m sure there’s a bunch of plays I haven’t even experienced yet at first base. It sounds crazy, but when you make mistakes, that’s kind of when you learn the most.”
Refsnyder’s bat warrants patience from Girardi. The rookie entered yesterday hitting .276 with a .705 OPS. He went 0-for-3 with a walk Sunday night.
Teixeira, on the other hand, is hitting .186. He is in the final year of an eight-year contract and his skills are diminishing, but Girardi still misses his power.
“It’s difficult because you need that big bat in the middle,” he said. “Carlos has been providing one of them, but last year we had four of them. Mac has hit his home runs, but the other two guys [Teixeira and Rodriguez] have struggled.”
Greg Bird, the presumed future first baseman, was a nice surprise when Teixeira missed significant time last year, hitting .261 with 11 home runs, 31 RBIs and an .871 OPS in 46 games. But he has a torn right labrum that required surgery and has kept him out all season.
Dustin Ackley, whose 35 career appearances at first makes him the clubhouse leader for non-regulars, also is out for the year with a torn right labrum. Chris Parmelee remains on the disabled list with a right hamstring strain.
If there were ever a time for Teixeira to come back quickly, it’s now.