We heard yesterday that Mark Teixeira tested his left calf by taking some at-bats and playing an inning in a simulated game. He won’t be able to help the Yankees this weekend in Toronto, but his return isn’t far off.
Yankees manager Joe Girardi told Wallace Matthews of ESPN New York that Teixeira took six at-bats of live batting practice today and is expected to play in an instructional league game tomorrow. Barring any setbacks, he is expected to rejoin the Yankees when they begin the final series of the season Monday against the Red Sox.
“Everything looks pretty good right now,” Joe Girardi said. “He ran better today, said he felt better today. He took a ton of ground balls and he’s going to play in a game tomorrow. Then we’ll go from there. He’s passed every test he was supposed to up to this point. He’s on schedule for what was scheduled, so that’s a good thing.”
Teixeira has appeared in just one game since originally injuring the calf on August 27. While he may not be 100 percent the rest of the way, he could provide a nice boost next week as the Yankees try to hold off the Orioles in the American League East.
The Phillies and Red Sox appear intent on pursuing free agent first baseman Carlos Santana, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports. Santana rejected a one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Indians on Thursday and is expected to draw widespread interest on the market this winter. The Mets, Mariners, Angels and Indians could make a play for the infielder, though no serious offers have been made this early in the offseason.
Santana, 31, is coming off of a seven-year track with the Indians. He batted .259/.363/.455 with 23 home runs and 3.0 fWAR last season, making 2017 the fourth-most valuable year of his career to date. Although he was primarily stationed at first base over the last year, he could step back into a hybrid first base/DH role with the Red Sox, who are hurting for infield depth with Hanley Ramirez still working his way back from shoulder surgery.
As for Santana’s other suitors, the Mariners are far less likely to pursue a deal after trading for Ryon Healy last Wednesday. Neither the Mets nor the Phillies have a DH spot to offer the veteran infielder, and the Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins appears to be blocking the way at first base. Then again, Santana may not find a more enticing offer outside of Cleveland, where Edwin Encarnacion might otherwise be the club’s best option at first base. During the GM meetings, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff said he “love to have both [Santana and Jay Bruce] back” in 2018, but hasn’t backed up that love with any contract talks just yet.