Rangers notes: Washington rolls out 50th different lineup

Posted Wednesday, Jun. 19, 2013  comments  Print Reprints
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Ron Washington would prefer to have a consistent lineup, but that hasn’t been the case for most of the season. With injuries and a reeling offense, Washington has altered the batting order on what seems to be a daily basis.

The Texas Rangers manager rolled out another new lineup Wednesday, the 50th different lineup in the Rangers’ 72 games and the 12th different one over the last 13 games.

“Just the nature of who I have to play because of the injuries,” Washington said. “That’s what it is.”

Nelson Cruz made his season debut batting third, a spot he hadn’t been in since September 2010. Lance Berkman, meanwhile, was batting fifth for the second consecutive game as he tries to find his swing.

Cruz went into the game having reached base the past 10 games. Nine of his last 12 hits had gone for extra bases. Berkman was batting .183 over his last 22 games, although Washington said Berkman would return to the No. 3 spot at some point.

Berkman showed signs of breaking out of his slump with a two-run homer in the second inning.

“When my lineup is working the way it’s supposed to work, Berkman is there [batting third],” Washington said. “Cruz is sort of hot right now, so I just wanted to play the hot hand and get him to the plate as many times as I possibly can.”

Cruz laughed off the notion that batting third had any more significance than his usual fifth or sixth.

“The only thing that matters is to be in the lineup,” Cruz said. “Any part of the lineup you’re going to contribute.”

Moreland ready

Mitch Moreland is set to rejoin the Rangers when they open a three-game series at St. Louis on Friday.

Moreland, on the disabled list with a right hamstring strain, went 3 for 5 with a home run and two runs scored in his third and final medical rehabilitation start for Double A Frisco on Wednesday. Over the three games, he went 6 for 12 with four extra-base hits.

Ron Washington said Moreland would work out with the Rangers on Thursday, and then be activated on Friday, the first date he’s eligible to return.

Limiting long ball

Josh Lindblom felt he pitched fairly well in his last start Saturday against Toronto, but two pitches cost him four runs. He gave up a pair of two-run homers, and the Rangers’ offense couldn’t bail him out in a 6-1 loss.

“You’re going to make mistakes through the course of the game, but I was able to get ahead of hitters and attack hitters,” said Lindblom, who allowed four runs on five hits with no walks and two strikeouts.

Lindblom makes his third start Thursday since being recalled to fill in for an injured Alexi Ogando.

Briefly

• Ian Kinsler said he felt fine the day after taking a shot off the chin while sliding into home plate. Kinsler, had three stitches and stayed in the game Tuesday after colliding with A’s catcher John Jaso. “It was just a little cut, just deep,” Kinsler said. “It wasn’t like my face was hanging off.”

• Jurickson Profar made a rookie mistake Tuesday when he laid down a sacrifice bunt in the first inning with Kinsler having stolen second. Ron Washington said he didn’t have the bunt on, because the situation didn’t call for giving away an out. “Wish he wouldn’t have, but that’s the way it went,” Washington said.

• Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito threw out the first pitch Wednesday and, unsurprisingly, had it sail a little right on him.

Drew Davison, 817-390-7760 Twitter: @drewdavison

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