Elvis Andrus was standing in the on-deck circle, hoping to get his third at-bat of the day.
Instead, a strikeout and caught stealing ended the fifth inning and Andrus’ game was done. The Rangers shortstop, who has taken it slow while recovering from soreness in his throwing arm, aired it out Wednesday and doubled in his second plate appearance in the Rangers’ 8-2 loss to the Colorado Rockies at Surprise Stadium.
After being stranded in the on-deck circle, he left for the locker room (along with most Rangers starters) to make way for Luis Sardinas.
“You always want to hit,” Andrus said. “I’d rather hit than play defense, but it’s going to happen. Everybody needs to play and I know Sardinas is going to do a good job and he needed to play.”
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Andrus struck out in the first on a 94 mph fastball from the Rockies lefty Franklin Morales, leaving Shin-Soo Choo at third base with one out. Prince Fielder picked Andrus up with an RBI single to center on an 0-2 pitch to cut Colorado’s lead to 2-1.
The Rockies scored six runs in the seventh as Neal Cotts allowed four hits and two walks in 2/3 of an inning. The Rangers added a run in the bottom of the inning but were held to six hits.
“It feels good, man,” Andrus said. “I was looking forward to it. I don’t like to be on the bench or out of the game. I wasn’t counting on that [double]. I knew I was going to be a little off out there because of missing [five] games but my second at-bat felt a lot better. He threw me a changeup right there and I was glad I put a good swing on it.”