ARLINGTON -- The score was 2-2 going into the bottom of the sixth inning, and it looked as though Rangers starter Martin Perez was done for the night. So shortstop Elvis Andrus decided to have a word with Rougned Odor as the Rangers were getting ready to hit."I was talking
ARLINGTON -- The score was 2-2 going into the bottom of the sixth inning, and it looked as though Rangers starter Martin Perez was done for the night. So shortstop Elvis Andrus decided to have a word with Rougned Odor as the Rangers were getting ready to hit.
"I was talking to Odor, I said, 'Martin has been pitching tremendous, and we haven't been able to get him some runs to make him feel comfortable,'" Andrus said following Texas' 3-2 win over New York on Wednesday night. Odor went up there and I said, 'Get on base and I'll get you in.'"
Odor and Andrus did just that, and the result was the go-ahead run. Odor drew a two-out walk and Andrus, true to his word, lined a 2-2 sinker into right-center for a triple.
Perez exited after six innings, Jake Diekman pitched two scoreless and Shawn Tolleson closed it out in the ninth. That allowed Perez to celebrate his first victory.
"He did a great job," Andrus said.
Andrus has done the same during the first 22 games of the season. It's just a start, but after going 1-for-3 on the night, Andrus is hitting .343 with 13 RBIs this month. He hit .230 in the first month in each of the last two seasons.
He also has the Rangers' only three triples of the season, and all three have driven home a run with two outs. Andrus hit just three triples combined in the last two seasons.
"It has been special. We saw it in Spring Training, and it started in the offseason," manager Jeff Banister said. "His work and his preparation are outstanding, and his focus is great. At the plate he has been as good as we can expect him to be. He has really anchored the bottom half of that lineup."
Andrus has been especially good with men on base and in scoring position. He is hitting .393 in the former scenario and .500 in the latter, which accounts for the fourth-most RBIs for any month in his eight-year career.
"I like it, it has become my specialty this year," Andrus said. "It is some of my favorite moments. I visualize before the game of being in those situations. It puts me in the right frame of mind."
Andrus also continued his torment of Yankees left-hander CC Sabathia. He is now 11-for-25 in the regular season off Sabathia in his career.
"Sabathia is such a great pitcher," Andrus said. "He's that good, so he makes me focus a little more."
That's been Andrus' mind-set for pretty much the entire month.
T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.