First Pitch: Is the shift in Teixeira's head?


Mark Teixeira came to camp 10 to 15 pounds lighter than he was last year. He told Andrew Marchand yesterday that he will close his batting stance when hitting left-handed this season. He's even talking about dropping a bunt or two down the third base line.

It all adds up to just one conclusion: Those sneaky shifters have won.

They have invaded Tex's consciousness, altered his hitting approach, even affected his diet. He's juicing -- fresh fruit and vegetable juices, that is -- eating all natural foods, doing everything he can think of to outwit that pesky second baseman masquerading as a short right-fielder.

Is this really the way for a guy who has averaged 36 HRs and 110 RBIs a year for the past nine seasons to go about his business?

"You’d like to see him use the whole field a little bit more and part of that may be through bunting,'' Joe Girardi said. "So I’m all for it. I’m all for the adjustments he’s trying to make. Because I think that as a player you have to make adjustments because people adjust to you.''

Teixeira whacked 39 HRs last season and drove in 111 runs, so it wasn't all bad. But that career-low .248 batting average (.224 as a lefty) is clearly eating at him.

The question is, should it be? Can you live with a guy who produces power numbers like that but only hits .250? Or would you like to see Big Tex drop a bunt every now and then?

ON-DECK CIRCLE: After a week of yeoman work, Marchand returned to New York last night, so I will be manning the clubhouse solo when it opens at 9:10 a.m. this morning. He took the flip cam with him but I will be filling the blog all day, so poke your head in every so often.

QUESTION OF THE DAY (Non-Tex related): Which Yankees lineup do you like better: Cano 3rd, A-Rod fourth? Or the other way around?