Baker back in lineup, draws start at third base
MINNEAPOLIS -- After sitting out four days with a bruised right knee, utility man Jeff Baker returned to the Rangers' lineup Saturday against the Twins as Texas attempted to snag its sixth series win of the season.
With veteran Adrian Beltre in need of a break from the field and the Twins sending out starting left-hander Pedro Hernandez, Texas manager Ron Washington opted to slot the right-handed Baker in Beltre's spot at third base.
Beltre, who launched his 350th career home run in the sixth inning of the Rangers' 4-3 victory Friday, was shifted into the designated hitter spot, with Lance Berkman getting a scheduled day off.
"I wanted to get Beltre off his feet," Washington said. "He thought today was the best day to do it, so I did it. Baker will make the plays."
Baker has not played in a full game since April 19, making two pinch-hitting appearances before he was injured making a highlight-reel diving catch in the second inning Tuesday in Anaheim.
Rookie shortstop Leury Garcia was filling in on the left side of the infield in place of Elvis Andrus. It is only the second time this season Andrus has been absent from the Texas starting lineup, taking a scheduled day off like Berkman. Andrus extended his current hitting streak to six games Friday by going 2-for-5 with a double.