Now Commenting On:

Teixeira hopes early spring start means fast open


TAMPA, Fla. -- Mark Teixeira hopes that revving up earlier to play in the World Baseball Classic will help him avoid a sluggish start to his season.

Teixeira is one of two Yankees participating in the tournament, joining second baseman Robinson Cano. He said that once he committed to the Classic, Teixeira reached out to hitting coach Kevin Long and wanted to speed up his preparation for the season.

"When I found out I was going to play in the WBC, I called K-Long and said, 'Let's not build up to Opening Day; let's build up to the WBC and the first of March,'" Teixeira said. "I think that will be good. There's never really a sense of urgency because Spring Training is six weeks long.

"Now I kind of have two weeks to get ready, so I'm in great shape. I have no problem kind of ramping up the baseball activities, making sure my swing is right and my timing is right. Hopefully, it's going to be great for the WBC."

Teixeira also said that the quick start "absolutely" could ward off the April struggles that have marked his career; last year, it was slowed by a nagging cough, Teixeira hit just .244 with a .290 on-base percentage in the season's first month.

"I spend almost all offseason and all Spring Training lifting weights very hard, getting my body in shape for 162," Teixeira said. "Because of that, I think [in] April I'm a little tight, maybe a little sore. This year, I've cut back on that.

"I'm not really going to get any stronger as I get older. I just want to keep that strength, keep that flexibility, so I've cut back a little bit on the weightlifting already to make sure I'm not tight for the beginning of the season."

Boys and Girls Club of America

©2014 MLBAM, LP. All rights reserved.

The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc. or the relevant Major League Baseball entity: Major League, Major League Baseball, MLB, the silhouetted batter logo, World Series, National League, American League, Division Series, League Championship Series, All-Star Game, and the names, nicknames, logos, uniform designs, color combinations, and slogans designating the Major League Baseball clubs and entities, and their respective mascots, events and exhibitions. Use of the Website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy (updated May 24, 2013).

View MLB.com in English | En Español