Rangers mulling utility infielder options

Rangers mulling utility infielder options

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Ian Kinsler had the night off Thursday and shortstop Elvis Andrus was sidelined for one more day with tightness in his right hip flexor. That gave the Rangers one more game to look at their two utility infielder candidates, Alberto Gonzalez and Luis Hernandez.

Gonzalez, who started at second base, is expected to get the job. He is 28, he has played in 378 Major League games with the Mets, Nationals and Padres and he has the ability to play steady if not spectacular shortstop. He has never hit much in the Major Leagues -- he has a career average of .242 with a .281 on-base percentage and a .317 slugging percentage -- but he is hitting .314 this spring and can do the little things that manager Ron Washington expects from such players.

Andrus was absent for the second straight game but could play Friday night against the Rockies.

"I'm feeling good but it's Spring Training," Andrus said. "I'll take off all the days they give me in Spring Training."