By DAVE SKRETTA
GLENDALE, Ariz. — Mark Teixeira’s stay with the U.S. team at the World Baseball Classic didn’t last long.
The Yankees slugger strained his right wrist while taking some light swings off a tee in the batting cage Tuesday, forcing him to withdraw from the tournament even before the Americans could play the Chicago White Sox in the first of their two scheduled exhibition games.
Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said Tuesday night in Tampa, Fla., that Teixeira would be out a minimum of 10 days.
X-rays were negative and an MRI revealed the strain, U.S. manager Joe Torre said. The Yankees said in a statement that Teixeira will be evaluated further Wednesday by team physician Dr. Christopher Ahmad and hand specialist Dr. Melvin Rosenwasser.
“It wasn’t something he wouldn’t be doing (with the Yankees),” Torre said after the U.S. played to a 4-4 tie with the White Sox. “It was just a freak thing.”
Torre said that there have already been conversations about who will replace Teixeira but no decisions have been made. The U.S. opens pool play Friday night against Mexico.
“I’m not throwing any names out,” Torre said. “We certainly are looking to fill this spot as soon as possible, so you know I’ll meet with my coaches. We’ll try to figure it out.”
Torre may not have been discussing options with reporters, but he did bring up White Sox slugger Paul Konerko with his manager, Robin Ventura. Konerko went 3 for 3 and drove in a run against the U.S. team in their exhibition game at Camelback Ranch.
Other names that are likely to be discussed are the Brewers’ Prince Fielder, the Angels’ Mark Trumbo, Mets first baseman Ike Davis and the Red Sox’s Mike Napoli, who can catch and play first.
Torre said he couldn’t say when the decision will be made because there are so many moving pieces, such as whether players are interested and their situation with their teams.
“We’re just taking names,” Torre said. “But again, Tex was a switch-hitter, which was ideal for us, and left-handed wise, we have a couple switch-hitters and (Joe) Mauer. Otherwise, we’re pretty lopsided right-handed. So we’re going to have to see what’s the best bet for us.”
The Rays’ Ben Zobrist started at first base for the U.S. team on Tuesday. Mauer can also play first base, while the Diamondbacks’ Willie Bloomquist also has experience there.