Elvis Andrus and Ian Kinsler of the Texas Rangers (Getty Images)
Texas Rangers manager Ron Washington has tried just about everything in his power to get his team out of its near-teamwide slump at the plate.
We'll see if Sunday's postgame team meeting behind closed doors had an effect, but we know lineup changes didn't over the weekend as the Rangers were swept in four games, at home, by the last-place team in the AL East.
Washington trotted out a new-look lineup on Sunday, hitting rookie phenom Jurickson Profar in the leadoff spot with Elvis Andrus and newly healthy Ian Kinsler, the club's longtime leadoff man, behind him. The results were more of the same, as of late, as the top three hitters in the Rangers' order combined to go just 2-for-13 with two walks and an RBI from Andrus on a ninth-inning infield single.
“Those are the guys that set the table,” Washington said in his postgame press conference. “But with the way things are going for us lately, you can’t pinpoint one part of the lineup. If the middle of my lineup was going well, we wouldn’t be here talking about a losing streak.”
Adrian Beltre is hitting the ball, but not with runners in scoring position, and after the cleanup spot the production drops off dramatically when you throw out A.J. Pierzynski.
The Rangers, now on a six-game losing skid, will need to figure something out at the plate this week with the first-place Oakland A's in town to close out the Rangers' longest homestand of the season. A three-game Oakland lead could turn into seven if things don't go well, and that would be detrimental moving forward.