ARLINGTON, Texas — No one needs to tell the Texas Rangers they aren’t getting the job done at the plate.
They know it and the numbers back it up. The club also believes it can turn things around at the plate.
Texas came into Friday’s series opener against Boston batting just .238 over the past five games. When the Rangers have gotten hits, they haven’t been able to string things together. In clutch situations, the numbers are even worse as the club is hitting just .182 with runners in scoring position in the last seven games.
The Rangers have scored two or fewer runs in five of those seven games.
“We’re not doing a very good job with guys on base,” hitting coach Dave Magadan said. “We’re getting guys on but we’ve got guys pressing with men on base. We had a meeting about it. It didn’t pay off right away but I think we’re all on the same page. We have to have a ‘pass the baton’ mentality, don’t feel you have to be the guy that does it.”
Keeping hitters from pressing is important. The Rangers had just five chances with runners in scoring position in Thursday’s 3-1 loss to Chicago but were hitless in all five of them.
“If you don’t get a good pitch to hit, have confidence that the guy behind you will get it done,” Magadan said. “It’s a work in progress. We’ve got a lot of confidence in our guys. We just need to get them to relax and let their talent rise to the top.”
Manager Ron Washington believes that will happen. He knows players like Adrian Beltre and Nelson Cruz will get things going. Beltre is in a 3-for-31 slide overall and 4-for-34 slump with RISP. Cruz, who was one of the team’s hottest hitters on the last road trip, is now in a 2-for-16 rut. David Murphy hasn’t started on the homestand because he had just one hit in his last 15 at-bats and is hitting .174 on the season.
“I haven’t been concerned about anything,” Washington said. “We’ve got guys that have a track record and I’m trusting that’s going to come into play pretty soon. Opportunity has been presented to us; we’ve just got to get a base hit. Sometimes when you’re in the situation we’re in all it takes is one base hit.”