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Bird updates status from hospital bed

Yankees first baseman shows appreciation for support after successful surgery
MLB.com @BryanHoch

NEW YORK -- Greg Bird's year ended before it even had a chance to begin, but the Yankees first baseman's social media game seems to be in midseason form.

Bird posted a photo to Instagram and Twitter from his bed at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York on Wednesday, smiling and offering a thumbs-up shortly after having a season-ending procedure to repair his right labrum.

NEW YORK -- Greg Bird's year ended before it even had a chance to begin, but the Yankees first baseman's social media game seems to be in midseason form.

Bird posted a photo to Instagram and Twitter from his bed at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York on Wednesday, smiling and offering a thumbs-up shortly after having a season-ending procedure to repair his right labrum.

"Can't say enough about how much I appreciate all the support I've received from everyone," wrote Bird, who thanked the hospital staff. "Tomorrow I'll begin to work as efficiently as I possibly can to return, stronger than before, as soon as I can to help this team win games."

The surgery was performed by Dr. David Altchek, the Mets' medical director. Bird, 23, made his Major League debut last August, and the left-handed hitter batted .261/.343/.529 with 31 RBIs over 46 games, taking over the starting duties at first base after Mark Teixeira was lost for the season to injury.

Video: BOS@NYY: Bird launches a solo shot into the bullpen

The Yankees planned to have Bird open the 2016 season back at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, where he would have served as an insurance policy in case the big club had issues with Teixeira or designated hitter Alex Rodriguez.

Bird spent approximately a month on the disabled list with a right shoulder injury at Double-A Trenton in May, when rest and rehab allowed him to return to the field. After the season, agent Jim Murray informed the Yankees that Bird's shoulder had started bothering him again, with rest and rehab prescribed once more.

The situation worsened in recent weeks while Bird began preparing for the season, prompting both Altchek and Yankees team physician Dr. Christopher Ahmad to recommend season-ending surgery. The Yankees can take solace in that catcher Brian McCann returned to form following a similar procedure after the 2012 season, when he was with the Braves.

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said that Dustin Ackley continues to be viewed as the team's backup first baseman behind Teixeira, while he plans to scour the available market to replace Bird's presence at Triple-A.

A run at a veteran free agent like Pedro Alvarez or Justin Morneau is considered unlikely, because, with Teixeira and Rodriguez on the roster, the Yankees can't promise the at-bats either player would be seeking.

Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch, on Facebook and read his MLBlog, Bombers Beat.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

New York Yankees, Greg Bird