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Mark Teixeira Expects to Play at Least 150 Games for New York Yankees in 2014

February 16th, 2014 at 10:05 PM
By Doug Rush

One of the many reasons why the New York Yankees had such a miserable 2013 season and missed the playoffs for the first time since 2008 was the near-season absence of Mark Teixeira.

The All Star first basemen was active for all of 15 games due to a wrist injury that originally started early on in spring training when Teixeira was taking batting practice for the United State team at the World Baseball Classic and didn't make his debut until late May, but was KO'ed for the season when it was determined that he needed surgery to fix a torn tendon in the wrist after he hit .151 with three home runs and 12 RBI.

The Yankees tried their best to make do with Lyle Overbay and later on, Mark Reynolds, but replacing a first basemen who normally hits 30-plus home runs and 100-plus RBI is just not easy to do. Now at 33 years old, Teixeira is looking to rebound from what can be looked upon as a lost season and be a force in the middle of the lineup again like he once was.

“I absolutely plan on playing 150-plus games this year, that’s my goal,” said Teixeira, who last surpassed 150 games played in 2012. “Yeah, every now and then I’ll have a day off, of course. That’s just natural, you get beat during the season, but I expect to have a healthy, productive season.”

People around baseball have worried about Teixeira's dip in batting average since joining the Yankees in 2009, but the two things that haven't changed are his power production at the plate and his Gold Glove ability at first base. While Overbay was a very suitable replacement in the field for Teixeira, he simply doesn't have the ability and range that Teixeira does; since signing with the Yankees, Teixeira has won a Gold Glove in three of his five years in New York.

With both Overbay and Reynolds now with the Milwaukee Brewers this season and the only other option; Kelly Johnson slated to play third base due to the suspension of Alex Rodriguez, Teixeira has to be able to shoulder the load at first base and give the Yankees his thump in the lineup that he's been able to do since his arrival five years ago. His other replacement last season in Kevin Youkilis, also dealt with injuries and is now playing in Japan.

Photo credit: Keith Allison / Foter / CC BY-SA

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Tags: Baseball, Lyle Overbay, Mark Reynolds, Mark Teixeira, MLB, New York, New York Yankees

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