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Washington emphatic about value of bunting

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Rangers manager Ron Washington has been known not to hold back on certain subjects and that was the case Sunday when asked about bunting. The Rangers were second in the American League in sacrifice bunts last year.

What set Washington off was when he was asked if anybody presented him with analytics that showed bunting is not a good idea.

"If they do that, they'll be telling me how to manage," Washington said. "I'll tell them they can shove those analytics. ... When I feel it's necessary, not when the analytics feel it's necessary, not when you guys feel it's necessary, not when somebody else feels it's necessary. It's when Ron Washington feels it's necessary.

"I look at the opposing pitcher, the guys at the plate and the situation and I'm saying, 'How can I give us an opportunity to get this runner where I want to get him?' If I've got the right person at the plate, I'm going to make him bunt. If it's a situation where we have runs already and we've got a decent lead early in the game, I'll probably let him hit. But if we're in a situation where the game is close ... I'm going to make him bunt. It's simple."

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger.
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