10/04/12 9:52 PM ET
Rangers still mulling Wild Card roster
By Todd Wills / Special to MLB.com
The Rangers will be able to reset their 25-man roster for the American League Division Series that starts Saturday, so their need for only one starting pitcher on Friday gives the club options. Daniels said it opens up the opportunity to go with a specialist in the bullpen or a player for pinch-running purposes.
"We've looked at that," Washington said. "We've addressed some things in that area. But I certainly don't want to talk about that right now."
The Rangers will go heavy in the bullpen, but don't expect starters Matt Harrison or Ryan Dempster on the roster. It could lock down a spot for outfielder Leonys Martin, who runs well, and utility players such as Brandon Snyder and Mike Olt for a pinch-hitting situation.
Washington lets Hamilton issue drop
ARLINGTON -- Don't expect another conversation between Rangers manager Ron Washington and center fielder Josh Hamilton concerning Hamilton's error on a dropped fly ball in Wednesday's loss to Oakland that helped the A's win the American League West title.
The play -- a routine fly ball in shallow center field that Hamilton botched to help Oakland score two runs and take a 7-5 fourth-inning lead -- has been the subject of much conversation and consternation among Rangers fans. But it's done with for Washington.
Hamilton wasn't available to talk to the media, as the Rangers' players had Thursday off.
"There was no issue with Josh and I," Washington said. "I don't care what you saw on the camera. I'm the manager. I'm allowed to ask questions. It's just that you'll get more views about things right now. I have no issue with Hamilton, and that's the end of that."
Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said the dropped fly ball that would have been the third out of the inning was just one play that contributed to Wednesday's loss. Daniels did acknowledge Hamilton's struggles since a vision problem popped up two weeks ago in Anaheim. The Rangers have lost 9 of 15 games during that stretch.
"It's easy to pick out one guy, but it's been more than that," Daniels said. "Has Josh played his best? No. Did he have an unusual injury? Yeah. I think the focal point of media, fans and some of us was the popup yesterday in center field.
"That contributed to the loss, but that's not why we lost the game. Josh struggling is not why we've slumped the last two weeks, but it certainly contributed. The reality is, there's no one reason why we've had a rough two weeks. We've got a clean slate right now, go out and play tomorrow and win."
No decision yet on Beltre's position on Friday
ARLINGTON -- Adrian Beltre was the designated hitter in the Rangers' final three games in Oakland as he deals with a sore left shoulder. Now the question is, will he be at third base for the Rangers' Wild Card game against Baltimore on Friday?
Manager Ron Washington said Beltre came out of Wednesday's 12-5 loss to Oakland in good shape. But the manager hasn't made a decision on whether Beltre will be back at third on Friday.
"I'll make that decision [Friday] when Adrian gets here," Washington said. "We'll sit down and see how he feels."
It's likely Beltre will try and plead his way into playing third, something he's done repeatedly down the stretch, asking Washington to let him play despite various ailments.
Beltre aggravated a shoulder injury trying to make a diving stop during Sunday's doubleheader against the Angels.
Rangers have good history against O's Saunders
ARLINGTON -- Orioles manager Buck Showalter made a surprising move on Thursday when he said left-hander Joe Saunders will start against the Rangers in Friday's American League Wild Card game.
It's an interesting decision, considering Saunders does not have a good history at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, going 0-6 with a 9.38 ERA. He has allowed 13 home runs in 31 2/3 innings.
"You can make numbers go any way you want to," Showalter said. "If you're looking for pitchers with good numbers against the Texas Rangers, they're hard to find. We have to pitch well and do things out of the bullpen and swing the bat and catch the ball. It's an opportunity for Joe. He's pitched some good games."
The Rangers did lose to soft-tossing left-hander Travis Blackley in the second game of their final series against the A's that cost them the AL West title.
Adams unlikely to pitch against Orioles
ARLINGTON -- Reliever Mike Adams didn't do any baseball activities Thursday -- no Rangera players came to the ballpark -- and it's almost certain he will not be available for Friday's Wild Card game.
The Rangers weren't going to set their 25-man roster for the one-game playoff until Friday, but manager Ron Washington didn't leave much of an opening for Adams' inclusion in Thursday's press conference.
"We'll just wait and see when he comes in and gets treatment and see what he can do," Washington said. "As of right now, [he won't be available]. Mike just got back here from seeing doctors, met us in Oakland and then came back with us."
Adams said Wednesday he is feeling improvement with the pain in his neck and shoulder, but is still unsure about the symptoms from thoracic outlet syndrome. Adams has been limited to play catch and hopes to resume throwing off a mound soon.
Todd Wills is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.