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Rangers increase pregame focus on defense

New routine aims to complete glove work before batting practice begins
MLB.com @Sullivan_Ranger

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers have adjusted their pregame routine to emphasize defense. They are going through 15 minutes of concentrated defensive work before beginning batting practice.

Most teams do their defensive work during batting practice. While one group of players is hitting, the others are routinely taking grounders in the infield or fly balls in the outfield.

Full Game Coverage

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers have adjusted their pregame routine to emphasize defense. They are going through 15 minutes of concentrated defensive work before beginning batting practice.

Most teams do their defensive work during batting practice. While one group of players is hitting, the others are routinely taking grounders in the infield or fly balls in the outfield.

Full Game Coverage

The Rangers' new approach is to get all the defensive work done in a 15-minute window before batting practice begins. That's how they do it in Spring Training, but only a few teams do it this way during the regular season.

"You're not worried about balls being hit around," Rangers manager Jeff Banister said. "It helps sharpen the focus and you can concentrate on your defensive fundamentals."

The Rangers entered Friday night's game against the Athletics last in the American League in team defense, having committed 21 errors through 21 games.

"It's not a reaction, it's something we talked about in Spring Training, doing it throughout the year," Banister said. "It's 15 minutes of concentrated work."

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

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Texas Rangers