Kinsler's recent play impressing Washington

Kinsler's recent play impressing Washington

ANAHEIM -- Rangers manager Ron Washington said he's been impressed with the play of second baseman Ian Kinsler, who entered Wednesday's game having homered in two of his past three games.

The home runs have surprisingly been a rarity for Kinsler, who has just three on the season after hitting 31 last year. But Washington said he has noticed that Kinsler has stopped swinging for the fences and, as a result, it's led to two recent homers.

"I've seen him become a guy who isn't trying to hit home runs," Washington said. "Those two balls he hit, he wasn't trying to hit them, he just reacted to a ball in a certain spot. That's when he's going to start powering the ball out of the ballpark."

But even without the homers, Kinsler has been impressive offensively with a .294 batting average and a .387 on-base percentage after hitting .253 with a .327 on-base percentage last season.

"I think he's getting much more comfortable up there," Washington said. "I think he's satisfied if a pitcher doesn't throw to him, he'll take his walks. So now he can go up there and ambush, and if it's not there he doesn't have to force it."