Texas Rangers

DeShields' hand feels better. That's the problem

Delino DeShields suffered a broken hamate bone in his left hand March 30. Oddly, as it has started to feel better, the center fielder has fallen into a slump.
Delino DeShields suffered a broken hamate bone in his left hand March 30. Oddly, as it has started to feel better, the center fielder has fallen into a slump. pmoseley@star-telegram.com

Maybe someone needs to stomp on Delino DeShields' left hand.

That's the one that required surgery for a broken hamate bone after only the season's second game and kept him out three weeks. It turns out it's also the culprit for his current slump.

The hand is feeling better. That's the problem.

DeShields said that he has tried to do too much at the plate on the days when his hand has better, rather than just taking the simple approach he has always had and especially had upon initially coming off the 10-day disabled list April 22.

The center fielder finally discovered that and a few mechanical flaws in his swing that led to a 6-for-50 skid that has dropped his average 82 points to .228. The skid also led to his first day off since coming off the DL, a span of 27 games.

DeShields is confident that he will get back in a groove without someone stepping on his hand.

"When my hand was bothering me, I felt like it was easier," DeShields said. "When it would start feeling better, it was like I was trying to do to much. I've got to get back to being simpler at the plate, and I'll be good."

"It was trying to swing harder rather than squaring the ball up. It was causing my front side to open up and miss pitches I should hit and chase pitches I normally wouldn't chase. I'm glad I figured it out, after 11 or 12 days."

Manager Jeff Banister turned to Ryan Rua for his second career start in center field, against the New York Yankees. But Banister said that inexperience, along with injuries to experienced center fielder Carlos Tocci and Drew Robinson, was not a factor in playing DeShields in 27 straight.

Tocci has been on rehab assignment with Double A Frisco and will move up Wednesday to Triple A Round Rock, where Robinson was optioned to Monday. Rua entered Tuesday in an 0-for-11 skid.

  Comments