ARLINGTON -- Former pitcher Kenny Rogers, who became the 14th person elected to the Rangers Hall of Fame, was honored on Friday at the annual luncheon. He will be officially inducted into the Rangers Hall of Fame on Saturday.The luncheon gave Rogers a chance to reminisce on 12 professional seasons spent in Arlington, along with seven additional years in the Minors. Rogers was drafted in the 39th round of the 1982 Draft as a pitcher, a position that he said he hadn't played since Little League. "The scout that was assigned to me had to have had a crystal ball to know what was going to happen," Rogers said. "That was the most amazing scouting job ever, because he was looking at a guy with not even a speck of knowledge of what he was talking about. I wasn't even a pitcher. He saw me play right field one night, and then saw me play shortstop for a few innings." As a "130-pound, 5-foot-9" kid, Rogers was then thrust into professional baseball. He was thankful that the Rangers did not rush him on his way up. "The Rangers' organization was the perfect organization to me," Rogers said. "It afforded me the chance to take the time to learn the things that I had to, because I was starting below zero. You can't start with less than I had to be a professional pitcher." It was not always easy for Rogers when he finally reached the Majors as a 24-year-old. He started as a relief pitcher, then gradually shifted into a starting role. "All the roles that I did, which was pretty much everything from mopup man to setup man to starter, they were all different, and they all helped me a lot," Rogers said. "They helped me understand the mentality and the differences of each role, too." When Rogers left to sign with the Yankees before the 1996 season, it appeared that his time with the Rangers was complete, but he signed as a free agent with the Rangers twice more in the later stages of his career -- before the 2000 season and once again before the 2004 season. "Texas was difficult," Rogers said, referring to Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, a notorious hitter's park. "Nobody really comes here, and not anybody ever comes back. I'm about the only person that did that. Tells you how smart I am." Rogers ranks as the Rangers' all-time leader in appearances and ranks second in wins (133) and innings (1,909), while ranking third in games started (252) and strikeouts (1,201).
Beltre runs bases, takes part in fielding drills
ARLINGTON -- Adrian Beltre ran the bases and participated in fielding drills on Friday before batting practice -- the first step toward him returning to the Rangers' lineup from a strained left hamstring.Rangers manager Ron Washington is firm in his belief that every player that goes on the disabled list should go through a rehabilitation stint, so the team will be waiting until Beltre is totally healed to begin the rehab. "We're not thinking about him going out [on a rehab assignment], we're thinking about getting him right," Washington said. "He'll run, he'll have a day, then he'll run again and we'll decide what happens." Beltre practiced taking the turn at first, along with going from home to second and second to home. The Gold Glover also booted the first grounder hit his way, much to the enjoyment of Beltre and his teammates. Beltre, who had participated in every Rangers game of the season when he went down, feels a little frustrated that he can't get back in the lineup sooner. After the workout, he said he felt "good enough." "I just want to get back in the lineup," Beltre said. "I understand their concern. They don't want me to be injured again while I'm not on the DL, but I'd rather not go [on a rehab assignment]. [If I'm] not ready by [Sunday], that means it's more games I'd be losing to rehab, and I don't want to do that. That's my opinion. That's what I want to do." Beltre is eligible to return from the 15-day disabled list on Sunday, but seeing as Washington has him slated to run on Sunday and be evaluated on Monday, a typical three-game rehab stint would put his return on Friday, Aug. 12 against Oakland.
Rangers' new-look bullpen gets the job done
ARLINGTON -- The Rangers finally saw what they were expecting out of their bullpen on Thursday after making high-profile trades for Koji Uehara and Mike Adams.Uehara, Adams, Darren Oliver and Neftali Feliz combined to pitch 2 2/3 scoreless innings against the Detroit Tigers in a 5-2 victory. Rangers manager Ron Washington took out starting pitcher Alexi Ogando and brought in Oliver to face the switch-hitting Ramon Santiago. Once Oliver came on to pitch, Tigers manager Jim Leyland brought in Jhonny Peralta to pinch-hit. "Bringing in Ollie to face a lefty, to me, is a luxury, because if they want to bring in a righty, go ahead, Ollie don't care," Washington said. Then Magglio Ordonez pinch-hit for Andy Dirks, and Washington countered by bringing in Uehara, who retired Ordonez to end the frame. But Washington insisted that he didn't feel the moves forced Leyland's hand. "I wasn't too concerned about telling Jim what to do," Washington said. "Jim knew more about what he wanted to do than I could ever know what to do." It marked just the second Rangers win all season in which the bullpen recorded at least eight outs without allowing more than two baserunners.
Teammates appreciate Young's approach
ARLINGTON -- It takes a special approach to get to 2,000 hits, and with Rangers infielder Michael Young five hits away from that milestone entering Friday, his teammates talked about his unique approach to the game."He's so consistent," Mitch Moreland said. "He sticks with his plan and his approach. He never changes anything, and it's just fun to watch. He's got a plan that works for him, and he executes it." The only thing that has changed for Young throughout his career is his jersey number, as he switched to No. 10 after the 2001 season. "He's a hard worker, he does the same things every day -- there's a reason why he has that many hits," Rangers second baseman, lockermate and six-year teammate Ian Kinsler said. "There's a reason why he'll get another thousand hits after that. I don't see why not." Even though Young has switched positions four times to make room for other starters, he has still managed to step to the plate and produce year after year. "He's a great guy to watch how he gets ready for a game and how he prepares," Moreland said. "His preparation is a part of how he's so successful. He does everything the right way, and he's a good player to watch, especially for a young player like myself. You really try to model yourself after him because of the way he goes about his business." As Young approaches the 2,000-hit plateau he will keep going about his business like he did before. "It's an impressive accomplishment, but it's just another step for him," Kinsler said. "As long as he stays healthy and stays on the field, he's going to keep hitting. I think it's just another step."
Craig Gentry began his rehab stint at Triple-A Round Rock on Friday night. He went on the 7-day disabled list on July 28 with concussion symptoms that were sustained on July 25. Rangers manager Ron Washington said after the three-game rehab stint Gentry will be returning to the Rangers, in time for their three-game series against the Mariners.
Brandon Webb had successful rotator cuff surgery on Aug. 3 and will commence a rehab program in about six weeks.
The Rangers have had at least a share of first place for 113 of 127 days this season.
Ian Kinsler has not committed an error in 34 consecutive games, the third-longest errorless streak of his career.
Louie Horvath is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.