By Evan Grant
March 27, 2002
Photo: Rick Battle
PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla.–The Rangers leave Florida for good Thursday. They can’t seem to get out of town fast enough because the catastrophic injuries just keep coming. The latest victim: infielder Mark Teixeira, last year’s first-round draft choice on whom the Rangers invested $9 million and a major league contract.
Teixeira was sent back to Texas late Monday evening to have an MRI on a sore left forearm and elbow that has bothered him for more than a week.
He is expected to be out for a minimum of four to six weeks, according to general manager John Hart.
Teixeira’s elbow will be immobilized for two to three weeks in hopes that it will accelerate the healing process. If it doesn’t, Teixeira could face season-ending surgery.
Teixeira, who already had been optioned to the minor leagues, injured his left arm running into a wall chasing a foul pop during a game. He had not played in more than a week while the Rangers tried to treat the injury conservatively. The elbow has not responded well.
Because of long and acrimonious negotiations between the Rangers and his representative, Scott Boras, Teixeira did not play professionally last year after being the fifth overall pick in the draft. Teixeira played in just 16 collegiate games in 2001 at Georgia Tech because of a fractured right ankle.
Teixeira did impress the Rangers this spring, getting four hits in 10 “A” game at-bats. The Rangers had planned to spend this season determining whether to keep Teixeira a third baseman or move him to first.