Beltre energized, hoping for extension

Third baseman feels healthy entering final year of contract

January 23rd, 2016

ARLINGTON -- Third baseman Adrian Beltre showed up for the Texas Rangers Dr Pepper Awards Dinner on Friday feeling good about his overall physical health.

Beltre has reported no issues this winter, especially with his left thumb. Beltre played the final three months of the 2015 season with a torn ligament in the thumb and had surgery immediately afterward.

"It's good," Beltre said. "It's just nice to get to the point where I am comfortable doing everything. We still have four weeks before Spring Training, but everything is going the way I want it to."

The Rangers' first full-squad workout is Feb. 24. When Beltre shows up, he will be entering the final season of a six-year contract and can be a free agent after the season.

Beltre will turn 37 in April, but general manager Jon Daniels is on record as saying the Rangers want to sign him to an extension beyond this season.

"It was nice to see," Beltre said. "They know I want to win, and they've shown they have done a good job putting a good team together to compete."

The Rangers won the American League West title last season with a record of 88-74, after losing 95 games in 2014. They ended up losing to the Blue Jays in the Division Series.

"Last year was a good turnaround from the year before," Beltre said. "I want to be on a team that wants to win. That's No. 1, but like I said, there is no reason for me to believe they don't want to win. [Daniels] did what he promised in keeping the team around to win. Right now I'm confident with the way everything is going, there is no reason why I don't want to stay here."

The Rangers usually discuss contract extensions in Spring Training. They have been busy with offseason moves, and their next task is to get deals done to avoid salary-arbitration hearings with pitchers Shawn Tolleson and Jake Diekman, and first baseman Mitch Moreland. Scott Boras, who represents Beltre, has also been busy this winter getting his current free agents signed, but there have been at least preliminary talks between the two sides.