"I'll never be Alex Rodriguez," the clean-shaven Youkilis said. "He's one of the best hitters of all time. I can be a good major-league hitter and help this team win."
The Yankees new third baseman arrived at the Yankees' spring training camp from Los Angeles without his old facial hair and with a new batting stance.
Youkilis batted at a minor league complex and in the main facility where he met with manager Joe Girardi and coaches.
The former Red Sox signed a one-year deal with the Yankees in December as a replacement at third for A-Rod — who was expected to be out until at least July while he recovered from hip surgery.
Now — with A-Rod's torn labrum being diagnosed as more serious than originally thought and the reports of alleged ties to performance-enhancing drugs hanging over his head — Youkilis' signing could be an important season long investment.
Youk was also asked about the perceived feud with Joba Chamberlain.
"I mean, you guys have written a lot about it, and I think it's just something that you guys keep going on and on about," Youkilis said. "We're here in spring training as a team and ready to play . . . so that's the drama that you guys are creating. I hope the only drama this year we create is walk-off home runs and hits."
Chamberlain and Youkilis, at least in view of reporters, did not interact, and the reliever did not seem to know the third baseman was in the building until informed by a reporter.
Youkilis said "in passing" he saw and spoke to several new teammates but not Chamberlain.
"At some time, we'll all sit down and talk," Youkilis said. "But I think it's all going to be OK."
He smiled and said "Don't worry."