First Pitch: Hurry back, Tex

September, 7, 2012
9/07/12
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New York Yankees fans have often loathed Mark Teixeira. As one of my tweeps put it earlier in the season, he doesn't hit in the first month or the last month. This may be true, but he does put up numbers throughout the middle. And the Yankees need him.

It seems unlikely that Teixeira will be back tonight, but Saturday or Sunday seems very possible. The Yankees need him.

Buck Showalter has stacked his lefties (Wei-Yin Chen, Joe Saunders and Zach Britton are the starters the next three days) because the Yankees have been very bad against them. Teixeira has an .880 OPS as a left-handed batter against righties. The Yankees desperately need that to even out their lineup and make it harder for Showalter to play the matchup game in the late innings.

UP NOW: My column on the playoff feeling at Camden Yards, which wasn't a good thing for the Yankees.

ON DECK: Tonight's pitching matchup: Phil Hughes (13-12, 4.18) vs. Chen (12-8, 3.79)

QUESTION OF THE DAY: Do you think when Teixeira comes back, the Yankees' offense will get right?
Andrew Marchand is a senior writer for ESPNNewYork. He also regularly contributes to SportsCenter, Baseball Tonight, ESPNews, ESPN New York 98.7 FM and ESPN Radio. He joined ESPN in 2007 after nine years at the New York Post. Follow Andrew on Twitter »

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TEAM LEADERS

WINS LEADER
Masahiro Tanaka
WINS ERA SO IP
13 2.77 141 136
OTHER LEADERS
BAJ. Ellsbury .271
HRB. McCann 23
RBIB. McCann 75
RB. Gardner 87
OPSB. Gardner .749
ERAH. Kuroda 3.71
SOH. Kuroda 146