Adrian Beltre is reportedly set to be in the starting lineup when the Texas Rangers open a four-game series in Baltimore against the surprisingly AL-best Orioles, and there isn't much that could be said that would be better news for the slumping Rangers, who have now dropped three straight series after starting the season with seven straight series victories.
It goes without saying the Rangers have missed the gold-glove caliber defense of Beltre at third base, as evidenced by the play of Michael Young and Alberto Gonzalez, but they've also missed his bat.
He has pinch-hit in recent days, winning the game for the Rangers on Saturday night in the 11th inning when he hit a three-run bomb on the screws to dead center field at Progressive Field in Cleveland.
On the season, Beltre is hitting .318 with five home runs and 16 RBIs.
The Rangers hit .313 as a team through their first 14 games, when they went 12-2 to start the season. In their last 14 games, they've gone 6-8 while hitting .254 as a team.
So yeah, the Rangers are in desperate need of Beltre back in their lineup. It'd be great if tonight was the night he returns.