Right-handed bat needed to bolster bottom of order
BALTIMORE -- The Rangers' lineup against left-hander Zach Britton on Tuesday night included Elvis Andrus batting sixth at designated hitter and Robinson Chirinos batting eighth at first base. One look at the lineup reinforces the club's desire for a right-handed bat in the lower part of their order.
"That's no secret," manager Ron Washington said. "It's obvious we're a little heavy left-handed."
But general manager Jon Daniels said he is not expecting to add an impact middle-of-the-order power guy through a trade. The Rangers have two key hitters on the disabled list, with Jeff Baker sidelined with a sprained right thumb and Lance Berkman out with a strained right hip. Both could be out for 2-3 more weeks.
"We came into the season arguably a little light in the power department, and it's played out that way," Daniels said. "With Lance and Baker banged up, we're seeing the impact of missing those guys. It's something we're looking at.
"There are some interesting guys to be talking about, but I don't see any middle-of-the-order guys available. The guys available are quality role players, but I'm not sure they'd have much of an impact. The number three, four, five hitters just don't get moved this time of the year."
The Rangers entered Tuesday's game with a team .421 slugging percentage, seventh best in the American League. They had a .385 slugging percentage against left-handed pitchers, the fourth lowest in the league.