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Teixeira and Soriano to Start Tomorrow

Tex and Sori ready to go
Tex and Sori ready to go

After taking live batting practice Monday, Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira has said he’s been a little disappointed that he’s not be able to take more live swings this week, particularly today. In the early sessions this morning Tex was held to only five pitches before pitching coach Larry Rothschild called the session. Luckily guest instructor Willie Randolph was able to throw him about forty pitches later in the morning, but either way Tex voiced his concern over the lack practice he has seen this week.

Manager Joe Girardi was also disappointed, but said sometimes this happens. It’s seems kind of strange that there has been nobody available to pitch to Teixeira this week. The Yankees have about 34 pitchers in camp, but with scheduled workouts and set batting practice sessions in place, there just wasn’t anyone available to throw batting practice to him. Teixeira was hoping to get in as much work as possible this week, he is scheduled to make his first Grapefruit League start tomorrow in Clearwater against the Philadelphia Phillies. The lack of work might cause Girardi to hold him out one more day, but as of this afternoon he’s slated to start at first base.

Tomorrow’s game will also see the spring debut of outfielder and designated hitter Alfonso Soriano, who’s been battling a bad case of the flu since he got to camp. Soriano has been doing some interesting work in Tampa this week, Sori has been spotted taking reps at first base. While Soriano’s exact role isn’t set in stone, he’s prepared to do whatever the team needs him to do this season. He’s caught balls in both left and right field this spring along with the little work at first base. “I have some work at first base just in case,” Soriano said. “But I’m just here to help the team to win. I have to be DH, outfield, play once in a while at first base.” Girardi has yet to tell Soriano exactly what he has planned for him this year, but with the crowded outfield and some question marks in the infield, it’s good to see that Soriano is willing to do whatever it takes.

Tomorrow’s game was already generating a lot of buzz for a few reasons. Along with Soriano and Teixeira getting their first starts, Masahiro Tanaka is going to make his first actual start against the Phillies. He is scheduled to pitch the first three innings and will see more big league hitters this time around. Also in tomorrow’s lineup and catching for Tanaka will be Brian McCann, who hasn’t been paired up much with Tanaka so far this spring. It might be something to keep an eye on and see how they work together.