Adrian Beltre is a good enough hitter to be a singles/contact hitter in the big leagues, but that's not who he is and it's not what the Rangers pay him to be.
The Rangers lineup is at its best when Beltre is a threat at the cleanup spot and he serves as some serious protection for Prince Fielder, the AL's top hitter. Right now, Beltre is no threat and it's because he's still trying to find a way to swing a bat comfortably with his thumb injury that he surprisingly returned from after a three-week hiatus last week.
Beltre started with a homemade pad on his bat, but according to the Dallas Morning News, he's shifted away from that in favor of a pad on his thumb. He's still trying to figure out what works, as he's just 7-for-29 since his return from the DL with one extra-base hit — a double in the ninth inning on Monday night.
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“Is it comfortable, I don’t know,” Beltre told the Morning News. “I’m just trying to find a better way to [swing].”
Until that happens, Beltre will only be a shell of the hitter he knows he can be.