Teixeira propels Yankees past Twins
TAMPA, Fla. -- Mark Teixeira had an RBI single during a three-run first inning in the New York Yankees’ 7-3 loss to the Minnesota Twins Friday in a split-squad game.
The first baseman had surgery to repair the tendon sheath in his right wrist last July. He was injured in early March preparing for the World Baseball Classic with Team USA. After returning May 31, Teixeira’s season ended June 15 when he took himself out of a game against the Los Angeles Angels.
"I’m really excited about the way the wrist feels," Teixeira said. "How it’s bounced back from the increased workload. I haven’t taken any steps backwards, which is very positive. I’m just very happy overall."
Teixeira went 1 for 2 batting left-handed and walked while batting from the right side Friday, and the switch-hitter is 2 for 12 overall.
Brian Roberts hit a run-scoring double in the first off rotation candidate Kyle Gibson.
"All I’m trying to do is make the decision tough," Gibson said.
New York was held hitless after Jacoby Ellsbury, Roberts and Teixeira got consecutive hits to start the first.
Yankees: David Phelps gave up two runs and five hits, including a long homer to Brian Dozier, in four innings for the Yankees.
Twins: Gibson allowed three runs and three hits over four innings.
EARLY EXIT MAN
Twins manager Ron Gardenhire didn’t hesitate when asked about a particular memory about Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter.
"Derek Jeter has been the main cog in sending my butt home a lot of times in the playoffs," Gardenhire said with a smile. "We’ll call him early exit man. He did that to us quite a bit."
Jeter announced last month that will be retiring after the 2014 season.
"He’s led that team forever," Gardenhire said. "One of the most professional baseball players I’ve ever seen. Class act. Enjoys the game of baseball. I’m going to miss him seeing him out there on the field. He’s a pretty special guy."
The Yankees decided at the last minute to have new catcher Brian McCann remain in Florida and not make the trip to Panama for two games this weekend against Miami so he can catch Masahiro Tanaka and Hiroki Kuroda Sunday and Monday, respectively.
"It gives me a chance to see more guys," McCann said. "It made more sense to stay back here. It would have been a great trip. At the same time I’m not upset about saying back."
Twins: Gardenhire said shortstop Pedro Florimon, who an appendectomy Feb. 17, could play Sunday.
"He’s doing great," Gardenhire said. "He has no issues."
Yankees: Shortstop Eduardo Nunez left following the fifth inning after Chris Colabello kicked him in the left thigh while sliding into second on an inning-ending forceout. Nunez felt the hard slide was unnecessary, but didn’t think it was done intentionally.
Coach Rob Thomson, who managed the Yankees split-squad, agreed there was no intent.
"It looked to me that he didn’t realize it was two outs," Thomson said.
Thomson said removing Nunez was a precautionary move.
Infielder Brendan Ryan (lower back) hit off a tee and did soft toss in a batting cage. He hopes to take batting practice in a couple days.
Non-roster infielder Russ Canzler was a late scratch due to left hip soreness.
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