Texas' Andrus gets extra time off

Texas' Andrus gets extra time off

ARLINGTON -- Shortstop Elvis Andrus was out of the Rangers' starting lineup Wednesday, giving him back-to-back days off as manager Ron Washington tries to get his second-year star ready for next week's playoffs.

Andrus said he is fine health-wise, and he welcomes the chance to rest up for next Wednesday's American League Division Series.

"It's what I need right now," Andrus said. "I want to get my body ready. I'm feeling it a little bit. I'm not as explosive as I usually am. I want to be 100 percent explosive."

Andrus has struggled at the plate down the stretch, with four hits in his past 41 at-bats. He is batting .155 with a .221 on base percentage for September.

But Washington said his bigger concern is Andrus' range on defense. Both the manager and Andrus said his range has been impacted late in the season by fatigue as the Rangers pushed to wrap up the AL West title.

"He's more important to us on defense than on offense," Washington said. "Where he brings presence for us is on defense, and that's what has been missing down the stretch.

"The thing is to get him refreshed and get his legs back underneath him. I'm not worried about his offense. I see the way he has been moving defensively. He hasn't been quick, he really hasn't been moving. Physically, he's fine. He just needs to get his legs under him."