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Mark Teixeira plays in game for first time since June 15

Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira warms up before

Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira warms up before an exhibition baseball game against the Philadelphia Phillies, Thursday, March 6, 2014, in Clearwater, Fla. Credit: AP / Charlie Neibergall

CLEARWATER, Fla. - Mark Teixeira declared the day "a good first step.''

And almost all of that entailed feeling no pain in his surgically repaired right wrist.

Appearing in a game for the first time since June 15, Teixeira went 0-for-3 Thursday afternoon against the Phillies. The first baseman, who tore a tendon sheath on March 5, 2013, in a batting cage while preparing for the World Baseball Classic and later needed surgery after being limited to 15 regular-season games in 2013, hit one ball hard, a fly to center off righty Kyle Kendrick.

"Wrist felt good, body felt good,'' he said. "So I'm happy.''

The switch-hitting Teixeira has plenty on his list of boxes to check before he's worry-free, but he saw this as progress.

"A couple,'' he said of the boxes he checked. "Just being in a live game. Seeing what it felt like to run around out there, seeing live pitching, swinging at good pitches, that was good. Making contact, get jammed, hitting a ball off the end [of the bat]. Doing some of the things you do during the season, and I did a lot of them today.''

Beltran scratched

Carlos Beltran, slated to bat fourth and play rightfield, was pulled from the lineup because of concerns about the outfield, which absorbed a lot of rain.

"Just because of the weather,'' Joe Girardi said.

Beltran's replacement, Ramon Flores, homered to right in the third for a 1-0 lead and drove in the winning run in the eighth with a sacrifice fly.

Soriano debuts

Alfonso Soriano, sidelined much of spring training with flu-like symptoms, played his first game and went 0-for-3 with three strikeouts as the DH.

"I don't feel comfortable out there, but that's my first game,'' he said, "and I'm looking forward to more at-bats and getting my timing.''

Extra bases

Derek Jeter snapped an 0-for-10 start with a single in the third inning. He doubled to left-center in the fifth . . . Danny Burawa, a righthanded reliever from Rocky Point and St. John's who impressed the Yankees and opposing team scouts during spring training two years ago before tearing an oblique, got the victory with a scoreless seventh inning. He is a dark-horse threat to earn a bullpen spot out of camp.

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