Mar 17, 2014; Bradenton, FL, USA; New York Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira (25) works out prior to the game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at McKechnie Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Fantasy Baseball: A healthy Mark Teixeira is a fantasy sleeper for Yankees in 2014

mark teixeira

Yankees’ 1B Mark Teixeira is slipping in fantasy drafts, but is worth gambling on as a potential sleeper (Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)

Remember Mark Teixeira?

The same Mark Teixeira that has been named to two All-Star Games, won three Silver Slugger Awards, and has five Gold Gloves to his name?

Yep, that’s the one.

Well, that Mark Teixeira is being undervalued in fantasy baseball drafts this season and the New York Yankees’ first baseman is ready to prove his doubters wrong — one hit at a time.

» Mark Teixeira, 1B (current ADP: #191):

Last season was an utter mess for Mark Teixeira.

The 33-year-old suffered a torn tendon sheath in his right wrist while participating in the World Baseball Classic.

He decided to rehab the injury and returned on May 31, but played just 15 games before shutting it down.

After undergoing surgery, Teixeira is ready to go in 2014, but he’s taking it slowly.

The 11-year vet is batting a paltry .143 (2-for-14) with only one extra base hit during Spring Training, but is confident that this is just part of the healing process.

“I’m not worried about hitting home runs right now because I haven’t played for so long,” said Teixeira. “The power is naturally there. The power will come.”

Fantasy owners would be wise to take a long hard look at Teixeira if he is still available at his current ADP of 191.  It could be a gamble due to his health concerns, but after almost a full year of recovery, he could be ready to perform like he has in years past.

During his 11-year career, Teixeira has failed to eclipse the 30-home run plateau just three times — during his rookie season in 2003, and in the last two seasons with the Yankees.  He led the American League with 39 HR in 2009.

Asking for 35 HR would be a little greedy, but if he can play 140 games, hitting 25-30 dingers wouldn’t be out of the question.  He smacked 24 HR in 2012 while playing just 123 games.

As of Monday, Mark Teixeira is being selected in fantasy drafts after the likes of Alejandro De Aza (188) and Kendrys Morales (190).  De Aza will mainly be a fourth outfielder for the White Sox, while Morales is currently still a free agent.

The upside isn’t what it used to be with Teixeira, but it’s upside nevertheless.  Take a gamble on the Yankees’ switch hitting first baseman and he could prove to be a difference maker in your fantasy league.

2014 Projections: .258/.338/.466, 26 HR, 75 RBI, 71 R, 2 SB

» Missed any of my earlier picks?  Please click here for links to all the sleepers I’ve have covered from each team so far.

Tags: Fantasy Baseball Fantasy Baseball Sleepers Mark Teixeira New York Yankees

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