Banister: DeShields Won’t Start at Second

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Logic would say the Texas Rangers should give Delino DeShields a real, hard look at second base.

With Josh Hamilton joining the team on Monday and taking his spot in left field, the Rangers were left with a crowded outfield with four talented players -- Hamilton, Shin-Soo Choo and then a dilemma in center field between Leonys Martin and DeShields.

DeShields has been a huge surprise this year after the Rangers got him on a Rule 5 draft pick from the Houston Astros. All he's done is hit .265 with an on-base percentage hovering around .400 and steal a dozen bases. His 3.95 pitches per plate appearance leads all Rangers hitters.

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In other words, he's been a spark plug for the Rangers' lineup, and has even been penciled in recently in the leadoff spot by manager Jeff Banister.

DeShields came up in the Astros' system as a second baseman, but he also committed a ton of errors there. So what's the Rangers' second-base situation? Well, it's Tommy Field. Not too inspiring, huh?

But Banister says the Rangers don't want to overwhelm DeShields, who has probably already had his share of overwhelming in his first go-round in the bigs.

“We like what Delino has given us at this point,” Banister told The Dallas Morning News. “He’s shown aptitude and instincts. He’s shown maturity in his at-bats. We are trying to find ways to keep him engaged and at the top of the lineup, because when he is on base, he scores runs. I don’t think we can put too much on his plate, but I don’t want to pile it so that things are falling off the edges.”

DeShields did play a few innings at second the other night, and he made a few plays. It sure would make sense to give him a try there to get he and Martin in the lineup more often, but the Rangers seem to have other plans for now.

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