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Andrus Ready For Leadership

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Andrus Ready For Leadership

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Elvis Andrus and Ian Kinsler of the Texas Rangers (Getty Images)

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Elvis Andrus was shocked when he learned his good buddy and double-play partner Ian Kinsler had been shipped off to Detroit while they, along with Adrian Beltre, were partaking in a Hawaiian vacation.

Much like when Ian Kinsler was given more of a leadership role after his mentor, Michael Young, was traded prior to last season, Andrus said he knows he's being expected to be more of a leader with Kinsler gone. The Rangers seem to be his and Adrian Beltre's team now.

"Before he [Kinsler] left, I was going that direction," Andrus told Richard Durrett of ESPN Dallas. "That is something that even with Ian here, I was still trying to get better at that. I want to be a leader. I will be a leader. But I know there are steps in front of me that I have to take and do for me to be to be a leader. There are still guys with more experience than me on the team that I respect and those guys I still follow — Adrian [Beltre] and now Prince [Fielder] — and they make everything easier for me. But I will do what I'm capable to step up and be that kind of player."

Andrus was signed to a long-term extension the day after the Rangers began the 2013 season, but got off to an awful start that lasted until the all-star break. Over the second half of the season, Andrus was a different player, hitting .313 and finishing the year with 42 stolen bases, four home runs and a career-high 67 RBIs.

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