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Martin joins Andrus on the sideline

Martin joins Andrus on the sideline

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Martin joins Andrus on the sideline

OAKLAND -- Shortstop Elvis Andrus was out of the Rangers' starting lineup for the third straight game with tightness in his lower back. Leonys Martin joined him on the bench Tuesday night, getting a day off after going 1-for-5 with four strikeouts on Monday afternoon in a 4-2 loss to the Athletics.

Martin has three hits in his last 19 at-bats and is hitting .175 in his last 14 games. He has cooled off as a leadoff hitter but manager Ron Washington is not planning any lineup changes. Martin is going to continue to bat first and Ian Kinsler will stay in the No. 3 hole. The Rangers went into Tuesday having scored exactly two runs in four straight games.

"I don't have any other options I want to try," Washington said. "I wish juggling was the answer. These guys have to do their job where they are. That's the bottom line. Just stay with it, don't panic and it will come around."

Andrus tested his back with some pregame running and hitting in the batting cage. He passed those tests but is still having trouble bending over. He may not play until Friday in Anaheim.

"I feel better for sure than the past few days," Andrus said. "I still feel some pain in the middle of my lower back, but it's a lot less. I'm trying to get my body ready to go but I don't want to be out there 50 percent."

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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