As season wears on, Andrus feeling stronger

As season wears on, Andrus feeling stronger

SEATTLE -- Elvis Andrus went into Saturday's game hitting .327 for the month of September. He hit .160 in September last season.

That's just one sign that Andrus is much stronger both physically and mentally at the end of his third full season in the Major Leagues than in previous years. His endurance has been a question mark in the past. That is no longer the case.

"Oh, yeah, I'm way stronger," Andrus said. "My body is stronger, I've learned how to prepare myself better. Last year helped me a lot. That was the first time I played so long. It taught me to take care of myself better, sleep more, eat right ... that's all carried into this year."

Andrus played in his 142nd game on Saturday. He played in 148 last season and manager Ron Washington wanted to lower that this year. He was looking to play Andrus in 135-140 games, but that plan took a hit when backup shortstop Andres Blanco missed significant time with a back injury. The Rangers still had Omar Quintanilla as a backup shortstop, but Washington didn't have the same confidence in him.

Andrus is finishing strong defensively. He still has 25 errors, the most for a shortstop in the American League. But he has not committed one since Aug. 19.

"I'm feeling good," Andrus said. "Defensively, I didn't do as good at the beginning of the season the way I wanted to, but it's how you finish the season. Right now I'm feeling good."