Rangers sacrifice defense at first in ALDS

Rangers sacrifice defense at first in ALDS

ST. PETERSBURG -- The Rangers went with Mitch Moreland and Jorge Cantu as their first basemen for the American League Division Series against the Rays, leaving Chris Davis off the series roster. Manager Ron Washington said Moreland earned the spot but also knows he is sacrificing defense.

Davis is considered an outstanding defensive player while Moreland is still learning the position. He played both first base and the outfield in the Minor Leagues.

"He's adequate," Washington said. "There's certainly room for improvement. There are some things we have to work on, but he's not a liability. As a group we're all trying to improve defensively. We can all be better."

Cantu, a right-handed hitter, started at first against left-hander David Price for Game 1 on Wednesday. Moreland will start in Game 2 against right-hander James Shields. But Cantu could replace Moreland defensively late in the game if the Rangers have a lead.

"That's something we've discussed and something we'll think about," Washington said.