Teixeira's thumb bruise a 'constant battle'

Teixeira's thumb bruise a 'constant battle'

NEW YORK -- A deep bone bruise on Mark Teixeira's right thumb has made it difficult for him to grip the bat recently, sapping a good amount of his power through September.

But the Yankees' switch-hitting first baseman may be turning the corner at just the right time, having belted two home runs in Friday's 10-8 loss to the Red Sox.

"I swung the bat well," said Teixeira, who homered in the sixth inning off Josh Beckett and in the ninth inning off Josh Bard. "It's going to be a constant battle. It's not going to be 100 percent, but I feel good enough to play. I'm going to go out there and keep working hard and try to put together good at-bats."

Teixeira's bone bruise dates to a diving play in the field on Aug. 27 in Chicago. Teixeira has also been dealing with a fractured pinkie toe on his right foot; his two homers on Friday were his first of September, during which he has batted .197 (15-for-76) with eight RBIs.

"Definitely the last two days and even a couple of days before that, I think I've been swinging the bat a little better," Teixeira said. "It's feeling better. Hopefully, I can build on the last two nights. We've got a long way to go. I hope we're going to be playing for another five or six weeks."