New York Yankees' Mark Teixeira Takes Huge Step Forward

By Nolan Silbernagel
Mark Teixeira
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

First baseman Mark Teixeira was one of the best all-around hitters in MLB when he joined the New York Yankees before the 2009 season.

He was not only known for being a power hitter as he hit 63 homers and drove in 226 runs between 2007 and 2008, but also hit the ball with a lot of consistency as he owned a .307 batting average over that span.

The power certainly did not leave Teixeira when he first came to the Bronx, as he averaged 37 homers and almost 114 RBIs (113.66) during his first three seasons in Pinstripes. However his batting average has taken a huge plunge. After posting an average of .292 in 2009, Teixeira saw his average drop to .256 and .248 over the next two years.

It has been even worse for him for the past two seasons as Teixeira suffered the worst statistical season of his career in 2012, hitting only 24 homers, driving in 84 runs and posted another low batting average  of .251. Unfortunately for him, and the Yankees, his career continued to spiral downward in 2013 as he suffered a strained tendon in his wrist that limited him to only 15 games.

However, things might be looking up for the three-time Silver Slugger Award winner. Playing in only his second game since undergoing surgery on July 1 to repair the torn tendon in his wrist, Teixeira earned himself a walk, slugged a double and scored on teammate Kelly Johnson‘s two-run home run to help New York down the Houston Astros 9-6.

It is not only a good sign to see Teixeira back on the field, but to see him being productive. While his power numbers have for the most part remained impressive while with the Bronx Bombers, it is his batting average that brings up the most concerns. It is essential that he continues to have productive at-bats such as the ones in today’s game to not make his low batting average be such a liability in the lineup.

It is no coincidence that the Yankees won the World Series the same season Teixeira had his best numbers. First base is dominated by great hitters in MLB and the Yankees need Teixeira to return to being one of the elite first basemen in the game if they are going to compete for a title again. The double might have only accounted for one hit, but it was certainly a good sign of what could be in store for Teixeira, and the Yankees, in 2014.

Nolan Silbernagel is a writer for You can follow him on Twitter @nsilbernagel, “Like” his Facebook page and add him to your circle on Google.   

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