NEW YORK (WFAN/AP) — Mark Teixeira held his knee and writhed in pain near home plate, thinking the worst after being hit by a pitch from Jon Lester.
A couple of hours later, he was hoping to play Wednesday.
Teixeira was hit on the side of his knee by Lester’s pitch in the first inning of New York’s 6-4 loss to the Boston Red Sox on Tuesday night, the Yankees’ sixth defeat in seven games against their AL East rivals this season.
“I’ve never seen him show that much pain before,” manager Joe Girardi said. “He’s tough. You know, he’s played with a broken toe, he’s played with a lot of ailments, but he was in a lot of pain, and it was scary.”
Teixeira was worried he had a broken kneecap.
“That’s the first thing you think about,” he said.
X-rays were negative and Teixeira was diagnosed with a bone bruise. He will be re-evaluated Wednesday, but a relieved Girardi said the team’s leading home run hitter will likely only miss a day or two.
“In my mind, I’m going to try to play. I’m going to get a lot of treatment, get it moving and hopefully, a good night’s rest will keep the pain down,” Teixeira said.
“I always hope to play tomorrow. Always,” he added. “You get beat up in this game. We all get beat up. You just get as much treatment as you can, and if I’m all right to go tomorrow, I’m going to go.”
Many watching thought retaliation from the Yankees would be on the way. It never came.
“This was an issue during the Joe Torre years, the Yankees never making … the Red Sox pay for their transgressions. But Girardi is much more of a hard-liner than Torre,” the Daily News’ John Harper wrote on Wednesday. “I still think fireworks are coming.”
Derek Jeter had two hits to move within 12 of 3,000. He entered the 10-game homestand with 2,986 and said the most pressure he feels in his march toward the milestone is reaching the mark at Yankee Stadium.
David Ortiz hit a two-run homer and Jonathan Papelbon labored through the ninth inning to earn his 200th save for Boston. Jacoby Ellsbury led off the game with a home run and Adrian Gonzalez hit an RBI triple as the Red Sox roughed up Freddy Garcia (4-5) early to move within two percentage points of the first-place Yankees in the AL East.
Jorge Posada, on the bench with the left-handed Lester on the mound, ran for Teixeira and stayed in at first base.
Posada, who pulled himself out of the lineup after he was dropped to ninth in the order the last time the Red Sox were in town, later got his first two hits of the season against a lefty. He snapped an 0-for-27 skid from the right side with a single in the third inning.
LISTEN: Joe Girardi after loss to Red Sox
“Jorge was great; three hits tonight and he did a great job filling in there,” Teixeira said. “Hopefully, he can keep it going.”
Working on seven days’ rest, Lester (8-2) gave up three runs and eight hits — seven singles — in six innings.
Papelbon, pitching while he appeals a three-game suspension for making contact with an umpire Saturday, gave up an RBI single to Posada but struck out Alex Rodriguez with a runner on second for his 12th save. He reached 200 saves in 359 appearances, fewest in baseball history. Mariano Rivera is next at 382 games.
“I’ve always called him the godfather,” Papelbon said of Rivera. “He’s the godfather of this role. He’s made this role what it is today.”
Red Sox reliever Bobby Jenks left in the seventh after throwing just four pitches because of tightness in his back. Jenks said it was a flare-up of an injury he had early in his career and that he was fine after coming out of the game.
Jenks will have an MRI on Wednesday and probably be out a game or two.
Ellsbury hit the fourth leadoff homer of his career, and the Red Sox chased Garcia soon after.
Garcia had gone at least five innings in each of his nine starts this season, but was knocked out after just 1 2-3 innings, giving up four runs.
After Ellsbury connected, Dustin Pedroia walked, Gonzalez tripled and Kevin Youkilis hit a sacrifice fly.
Pedroia had an RBI double in the second to make it 4-1. Garcia intentionally walked Gonzalez to load the bases, ending his night.
“I’m disappointed. I couldn’t throw my slider, and that’s what happens,” Garcia said. “I’ve got to throw strikes, and I really didn’t have any chance to make adjustments.”
The Yankees scored in the bottom of the first, taking advantage of Lester’s early wildness. The left-hander plunked Teixeira and, three batters later, Russell Martin.
“It’s tough to hit a guy like that and see him kind of go off the field not feeling too good,” Lester said. “Too be able to get back up on the mound and throw strikes was key.”
NOTES: RHP Phil Hughes (shoulder inflammation) threw off a mound at the Yankees’ complex in Tampa, Fla., and is expected to throw a simulated game Thursday. … Jeter introduced the DJ3K bracelet marking his pursuit of 3,000 hits. Proceeds from the sale of the silicone bracelets will benefit his Turn 2 Foundation.
Should the Yankees have plunked a Boston player in retaliation? Sound off in the comments below…
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