Mark Teixeira has knee drained

NEW YORK -- Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira, the team's leading home run hitter and run producer, had fluid drained from his knee and did not play Wednesday against the Tampa Bay Rays.

Manager Joe Girardi said Teixeira's left knee has been troubling him "for a few days,'' and the decision was made to drain the knee after Tuesday's 2-1 loss to the Rays at Yankee Stadium.

"We expect him to be fully fine,'' Girardi said. "He's played through this and we fully expect him to be back in there tomorrow.''

Teixeira had a cartilage cleanup in his left knee in 2008 and has had to have it drained from time to time ever since. However, this was the first time he had it done "in a couple of years,'' he said.

"I don't have a lot of cartilage in that knee so sometimes it gets irritated and it just blew up on me," he said. "Structurally it's all right, it's just that there's not a lot of cushion in there. It's not going to keep me out for me than hopefully today."

General manager Brian Cashman told ESPNNewYork.com via text message that Teixeira's injury was "not serious'' and that he thinks Teixeira would be available to play when the Yankees begin a three-city, 11-game road trip on Thursday in Minneapolis.

Teixeira missed all but 15 games last year due to a wrist tendon sheath injury that required surgery, and missed 14 games this April with a hamstring strain.

Despite playing in just 62 games this season, Teixeira leads the Yankees with 15 home runs and 41 RBIs -- no other Yankee has more than nine home runs or 36 RBIs.

The Yankees also were without Jacoby Ellsbury, who Girardi said was not injured, but "sore all over,'' and needed a day off. Ellsbury leads all Yankees regulars with a .288 batting average and .357 on-base percentage.

"Well, it is what it is," Girardi said of Wednesday's lineup. "Someone else is going to have to come up with some big hits today."

The Yankees have scored just 10 runs in their past four games, all losses.