Young makes first start at shortstop since '08

Young makes first start at shortstop since '08

ANAHEIM -- Michael Young was at shortstop for the Rangers on Tuesday, his first start at the position since he won the Gold Glove there in 2008.

Manager Ron Washington wanted Young to play the position in case he is needed there in the playoffs. Elvis Andrus was at designated hitter on Tuesday for the first time in his career.

"I just wanted to get Michael reacquainted with shortstop in case there is a need," Washington said. "The only way that's a need is if something happens to Elvis."

What has happened is the Rangers seem concerned about backup shortstop Andres Blanco. He has stress fracture in his lower back and has not been the same player he was last season. He has been on the disabled list twice and has played in just 35 games with 76 at-bats this season. Instead of being able to switch-hit, he has been limited to batting right-handed.

"He missed a whole lot of time," Washington said. "He has been hurt a lot."

This could impact the Rangers' postseason roster. If they think Young can play shortstop in an emergency, they could decide to keep Esteban German on the roster instead of Blanco. He offers the advantage of more speed off the bench.

Young was told by Washington on Monday night that he was playing shortstop. Young just said that was fine with him.

"It doesn't matter to me," Young said. "I like playing baseball in the big leagues. I just go out and play; whatever position they say is fine with me. I'll take ground balls, let my eyes get adjusted and then let my instincts kick in."

Blanco was on the Rangers' postseason roster last year but did not play in any of the 16 games.