Josh Hamilton, Adrian Beltre heating up
ARLINGTON, Texas -- For the Texas Rangers, perhaps now is the perfect time for the No. 3 and No. 4 hitters to start feeling comfortable and confident at the plate.
|Rangers' slugger Josh Hamilton calls Ben and gives him an exclusive preview of his new movie. |
Hamilton is hitting .287 in August, a big increase over his .127 in July and .223 in June. But where it matters most -- driving in runs -- Hamilton has 23 RBIs so far this month with seven games left. He had 27 combined in June and July.
Beltre is also feeling better about his offensive game. The third baseman was in a slump, at least in terms of clutch hits. Before his three-homer game Wednesday, he had just one homer and seven RBIs in his previous 29 games. But Wednesday's performance carried over to Thursday. He hit another home run and had three hits.
"More than anything I want to feel more comfortable, have that comfort back," Beltre said. "I was trying to find my swing. Yesterday was a really good day for me and today was easier because I had a better day yesterday. I'm not thinking as much at home plate. I'm seeing the ball and trying to put a good swing on it instead of fixing my swing. Maybe now I can be more consistent and just hit the ball hard instead of thinking too much."
Manager Ron Washington knows that if he can get two of the key cogs in the middle of his lineup going again, it bodes well down the stretch and into the postseason. He's pleased with how Hamilton has bounced back.
"I'm seeing patience," Washington said. "He's staying over the ball and using the opposite part of the field. When Josh starts getting it all kinds of ways -- ground balls, singles, sac flies -- then you know he's where he should be. Once again, there will be some pitchers that make some swings and he's going to swing at them.
"But down the stretch, he's our horse. So is Beltre. So is (Mitch) Moreland. So is (David) Murphy. We've got a pretty good team and if we stay healthy, Hamilton can play a huge part in how far we go."
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- There are no games scheduled for today.