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Teixeira hopes to return to starting lineup Tuesday

After suffering from a lower lat strain, Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira hopes to be back in the starting lineup Tuesday against the Rangers (MLB.com, July 29).

Teixeira took on-field batting practice Monday for the first time since his last game on July 20 against the Reds. He singled in his first appearance back, pinch hitting in Monday’s 4-2 loss.

“I’m very happy,” Teixeira said. “The back spasms are gone, which I’ve been dealing with for a long time, so that’s really good. It’s good to see that the treatments worked and the time off helped, so hopefully they won’t come back.”

At the time of the injury, Teixeira has a platelet-rich plasma injection and only anticipated missing three to four days. The recovery has subsisted for longer than planned, but he has managed to stay off the 15-day disabled list.

“I wasn’t expecting all the little annoying things that come up. That’s part of the game,” Teixeira said before the game. “Hopefully this is it, and I have two healthy months to finish the season. But missing a couple of games here, a couple of games there, it’s never fun.”

Teixeira said that last season’s wrist injury has made him realize that he can’t play through injuries he may have played through in his 20s.

“You fouled a pitch of your leg, ‘Go get ‘em.’ Strain something in your back, ‘Go get ‘em.’ That’s just the way it is when you’re young. I can’t play through those things [now]. I don’t think I would have had to miss games with back spasms.”

Despite the little injuries, the 34-year-old said he just has to stay on top of maintenance.

“I was very lucky that I could play through those things and stay on the field as long as anybody,” Teixeira said. “But at a certain point, you hit a wall. I hit a wall last year, and hopefully I won’t have a lot of these. But if they do pop up, it’s just harder to play through it.”