Another season, another injury to New York Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira. In the second inning of Friday’s game. It was revealed that he strained his hamstring. The Yankees then placed him on the 15-day disabled list. The Yankees moved Kelly Johnson from third to first.
Teixeira missed all but 15 games in the 2013 season with a wrist injury and this isn’t how he or the Yankees expected to start the 2014 season.
Adjustments to the lineup were made the next day. Brian Roberts went back to the bench and a young prospect made his starting debut on Saturday. Yangervis Solarte was the starting third baseman and has hit the ball very well in a short amount of time. He’s had 12 at-bats and has a .538 average with three doubles and four RBI.
Solarte played one game at second base before the Teixeira injury. As a valuable utility player, the Yankees have some depth in the infield. Johnson has very little experience at first base, only three games, but is feeling optimistic about his progress.
If Teixeira ends up suffering a setback or takes longer than normal to return, Solarte’s value will continue to rise. He is a young hitter with a lot of upside. He sees the ball well and hits it where it needs to go. In 15 plate appearances this season, he has only one strikeout. In 133 games in Triple-A last year, Solarte had 69 strikeouts with a .276 batting average.
If you are in a very deep or AL-only league, Solarte may be a guy to keep an eye on. He won’t be the explosive player that Miguel Cabrera is, but he can get on base and drive in some runs.