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Derrek Lee turns down Yankees' offer

03/15/2013 10:04 AM ET
By Jon Lane

Derrek Lee had an offer on the table for the New York Yankees to come out of retirement and play first base in place of the injured Mark Teixeira. However, Yahoo! Sports reported that Lee turned down the offer.

The Yankees continue to look within for a solution and right now the leading candidate is Juan Rivera. Normally an outfielder, Rivera has played first base this Spring Training and his career. He's making a case for playing time, period, by batting .375 with 12 hits (four doubles) in 32 at-bats. If Rivera keeps it up, it will allow the Yankees to keep Kevin Youkilis at third base, but the team is also evaluating Ronnier Mustelier at the hot corner. Mustelier is batting .292 (7-for-24) with a home run and a triple, has played a capable third and was in Friday's starting lineup at the position. Although Youkilis would move to first if Mustelier impresses, Rivera would be back in his natural position in the outfield.

Lee, 37, last played in 2011 for the Baltimore Orioles and Pittsburgh Pirates, batting .267 with 19 home runs in 113 games despite missing time after suffering a broken bone in his left wrist when hit by a pitch. Lee won the National League batting title in 2005 after hitting .335 with the Chicago Cubs. Over a 15-year career, Lee has 331 homers and was on the Florida Marlins team that defeated the Yankees in the 2003 World Series.

Teixeira will miss at least two months with a strained a tendon in his right wrist.

Follow Jon Lane on Twitter: @JonLaneNYC

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