Murphy, Beltre fighting through slow starts

ARLINGTON, Texas – Texas outfielder David Murphy wouldn’t mind right now if he were hitting his career April average.

Murphy, who got Tuesday off in favor of Jeff Baker, is hitting just .176 this season. He’s a notoriously slow starter, with a .228 lifetime average in March and April, but it doesn’t make the start any easier for him to take.

“It’s tough for any player to go through,” Murphy said. “I know I’ve endured some tough Aprils before, I don’t know about to this extent, but either way I’m going to keep battling.”

Murphy started the 2009 season in a 0 for 23 slide but he wasn’t an everyday player at the time. He rebounded to hit .269 that season.

Playing every day and struggling is different.

“I didn’t really have that many at-bats,” Murphy said. “In 2010, I was hitting .150ish but I didn’t have that many at-bats. This is a little more prolonged, but I still have the feeling where I’m going up there every at-bat thinking is the at-bat where the trend is going to be reversed. It’s definitely frustrating but what can you do besides keep battling, keep fighting, do whatever you can to come out of it.”

Murphy isn’t the only regular struggling.

Adrian Beltre came into Tuesday’s game hitting just .221 with four homers and nine RBI. Those aren’t awful numbers, but Beltre knows he’s not hitting up to his lofty standards.

“I’ve always been a slow starter,” said Beltre, who is a .273 hitter for his career in April. “Probably out of my 16 years in the big leagues, only about five have been started on a hot streak. One thing I’ve learned through the years is it’s a long season and I know I’m going to be okay. I’ve been through this a lot. I don’t want to get myself crazy over this.”

Beltre said he hasn’t felt good about his swing yet but he expects that to come. Maybe he just needs the weather to warm up, which is a given in Texas.

“I get warm with the weather,” Beltre said. “Obviously in my career I’ve been a better second-half player than the first half.”