Teixeira to make return for opener vs. Sox

Teixeira to make return for opener vs. Sox

Teixeira to make return for opener vs. Sox
TORONTO -- Mark Teixeira will return to the Yankees' lineup on Monday against the Red Sox, as manager Joe Girardi has the slugger batting fifth and playing first base.

Teixeira was working out in Tampa, Fla., on Sunday after playing in an instructional league game over the weekend. He had no issues with the strained left calf that had sidelined him for more than three weeks, paving the way for his return.

"We expect to see him in New York on Monday," Girardi said Sunday. "He'll see the doctor tomorrow and see if he's cleared to play."

Having Teixeira back in the lineup will have an immediate impact of restoring balance to the order, Girardi said.

"It's the first time we'll have our whole lineup for a long time, which is really good," Girardi said. "It will make our lineup different. You think about [fewer] lefties being stacked together, too.

"It gives you the ability not to stack left-handers, which is something that we've had to fight, and at times we've been vulnerable to that. It seemed like everyone was throwing left-handers against us, and Tex is a huge bat against left-handers. It's affected us."

Teixeira suffered the calf strain in late August and aggravated the injury playing in a Sept. 8 game against the Orioles in Baltimore.

Girardi played Teixeira at first base in that game, as Teixeira thought he would be able to keep the calf loose by being in the field rather than serving as the designated hitter.

Though the plan didn't work, as Teixeira was injured trying to beat out a game-ending double-play ball, Girardi said that he would have no problem playing Teixeira in the field again.

"My thinking is first base, but I'll talk to him and see what he thinks," Girardi said.