Michael Young said he's focused on baseball

February, 19, 2011
2/19/11
1:51
PM CT
SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Michael Young arrived for spring training on Saturday as expected and said he wanted to focus on baseball, but he stopped short of rescinding his demand for a trade.

Young said there is no need to speak to general manager Jon Daniels, but that he has spoken with club president Nolan Ryan several times and has had honest discussions. Young did not want to answer any questions regarding a trade -- even the question of whether he still wanted to be traded. Daniels and Ryan are scheduled to address the media this afternoon.

"After all this stuff, I'm a baseball player," Young said. "This is what I love to do, this is what I am passionate about doing. I'm excited to be here. I want to now just go out and play. After all this stuff is done, there's a season to be played."

Young said he would not allow his situation to be a distraction for the team and he will use spring training to prepare for the role the Rangers have set out for him as designated hitter and super-utility infielder.

"The unfortunate part about this is there's probably a handful of people that know all the details here and the rest of those details aren't going to come from me," Young said. "I've been fortunate to have some candid and truthful conversations with Nolan that I'm grately appreciative of. He knows exactly where I'm at. I've spared no details. I know where he's at. Apart from that, I'm not going to talk about anything trade related. Now that we're here at spring training, one thing I'll never do is disrupt my teammates' preparation for the season. I think the more said about this issue could potentially do that, and that's not the kind of teammate I am."

Young stressed that the decision to ask for a trade a few weeks ago had nothing to do with his role as a DH and super-utility infielder. The Rangers said a few weeks ago that Young had a "change of heart" on his role. He disagrees.

"I agreed to do it and two weeks before camp just magically said, 'I change my mind.' That's not the case," Young said.

Young agreed to play that role before Adrian Beltre was signed and said that was still the plan. But he wouldn't go into details about why he asked for the trade in the first place.

"A lot of things led up to this point," Young said. "Having said all that, I'm very happy that I get to come play baseball. I had a day and a half to drive over here and I didn't think about any of this. I thought about baseball."

Young came in the clubhouse briefly before talking to the media. He hugged a few teammates and manager Ron Washington. The manager also came in to listen to Young's chat with the media, which included several national writers and all the local TV stations.

"I love Wash -- always have, always will," Young said. "I can't put it any simpler than that. I don't think he needs to worry about me. Once we set foot here in spring training, it's not about me anymore. It's about team."
Richard Durrett joined ESPNDallas.com in September 2009. He writes about colleges, the Dallas Stars and the Texas Rangers. Richard spent nine years at The Dallas Morning News covering the Rangers, Stars, colleges, motorsports and high schools.

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TEAM LEADERS

WINS LEADER
Yu Darvish
WINS ERA SO IP
10 2.90 167 133
OTHER LEADERS
BAA. Beltre .323
HRA. Beltre 15
RBIA. Beltre 58
RA. Beltre 57
OPSA. Beltre .883
ERAY. Darvish 2.90
SOY. Darvish 167