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Andrus coaxes way into Washington's lineup

ARLINGTON -- Elvis Andrus wasn't in the Rangers' lineup for the series finale against the Royals when it was first posted in the clubhouse on Sunday.

Manager Ron Washington intended to give Andrus the day off and give Jurickson Profar the start at shortstop.

That didn't go over too well with Andrus, according to Washington.

"He came in and busted my door down," Washington said, exaggerating how his talk with Andrus actually went. "I got the maintenance people to come and put another one up. He pulled all the stuff off my desk, turned that table over. ... He scared me."

Washington caved after Andrus twisted his arm and received the starting nod at shortstop, batting leadoff for the Rangers. Andrus said he's dealing with back pain, but he told Washington he could play through it.

"You just have to learn to play through pain," Andrus said. "It's nothing really bad anyways. That's why he wasn't concerned with me playing today."

Andrus said he wanted to play to get out a 7-for-43 hitting slump in his previous 11 games. His batting average has dipped from .282 to .260 during the stretch.

"I don't feel too good right now, offensively," Andrus said. "I think the best way to get out of a jam is to keep playing."

Andrus felt he hit the ball well in Saturday's 4-1 loss to the Royals in 10 innings. He went 0-for-4 with a walk, but thought he hit the ball well in three of his at-bats.

"I feel like my offense is about to break out again," Andrus said.

Andrus said he also wanted to play with the amount of starters out on Sunday. Along with Ian Kinsler's injury, Adrian Beltre was absent from the lineup with a mild strain in his left hamstring. Washington also gave catcher A.J. Pierzynski the day off and started Geovany Soto behind the plate.

"I think you learn, when you play next to Beltre to go out there and play," Andrus said. "If you can play, go out there and do it. That's the best feeling, when you get to be on the field every day. Especially when you feel really good, and I feel good today. You don't want to be on the bench.

Washington said Andrus always enters his office when he's not in the lineup. Andrus somehow persuaded Washington to go against his gut feeling on Sunday.

"Sometimes it doesn't work, but I guess it worked today," Andrus said.

Master Tesfatsion is an associate reporter for
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