Manager Ron Washington felt like changing up his lineup Friday. He put Shin-Soo Choo back in the leadoff spot, pushed Carlos Pena into the three-hole and dropped Leonys Martin into the six-hole.
“See what happens,” Washington said.
In the midst of an eight-game losing streak, what could it hurt? It’s been the longest such drought in Washington’s managerial career and the stated emphasis this season has been put on development.
But the Rangers still want to win and Washington believes he’s fielding a big-league club capable of doing that every night.
“Nobody likes to lose and I especially don’t because I’m not a loser,” Washington said. “Those guys don’t like to lose because they’re not losers. But when that time comes, you find what you’re made of. I know what I’m made of. I’m just trying to help them understand what they’re made of.”
Washington reflected back on his playing days. He remembers being part of the 1982 Minnesota Twins that lost 102 games, but several of those players became the core of the Twins’ 1987 World Series championship team.
“They took a whipping together, learned how to hang together and then they started to give some whippings,” Washington said. “We’ll start giving some whippings.”
Jim Adduci is progressing well after re-fracturing his left pinky and has gone through fielding exercises the past three days. He hopes to begin hitting off a tee next Wednesday.
“Right now, it’s mostly just gripping the bat,” Adduci said.
Kevin Kouzmanoff, meanwhile, has rejoined the team for most home games and is doing well since undergoing back surgery in early May.
He is going through exercises to rebuild his core strength and will meet with back specialist Robert Watkins in Southern California on July 8 to determine the next step.
“He’ll either give me the OK to start baseball activities or he’ll say take a couple more weeks of strength exercises,” Kouzmanoff said. “But I’m feeling good, feeling strong. I think I’ll play again this year.”
• Saturday’s starter Yu Darvish said the Rangers’ record does not dictate how motivated he is going into a game. Said Darvish: “I just have to prepare the best I can to do my best in the start I pitch. Every time my approach doesn’t change.”
• Outfielder/ first baseman Brad Snyder elected to take free agency after being designated for assignment by the Rangers on Tuesday.
• Saturday’s game will be televised on Fox Sports 1 with Justin Kuchar and Bert Blyleven on the call.