Elvis Andrus finds swing at right time
June, 5, 2013
By Todd Wills | ESPNDallas.com
BOSTON -- Mired in a slump, Texas Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus let it all go in Wednesday night's 3-2 victory over the Boston Red Sox.
Andrus came up with a chance to be a hero with two on and two out in the top of the seventh inning, the scored tied at 1-1. Red Sox manager John Farrell brought in ex-Ranger Koji Uehara to get Andrus out.
The move backfired.
Trying to put a 9-for-52 skid behind him, Andrus had the good fortune of going up against a pitcher he knew well. Uehara likes to get ahead with fastballs for strikes, and Andrus was ready. He ripped a two-run double off the Green Monster in left-center field to give the Rangers a 3-1 lead.
"He's always aggressive," Andrus said. "That's what I saw. I was trying to stay calm and see my pitch and feel like myself at the plate."
Jim Rogash/Getty ImagesElvis Andrus is right to be pumped up. The Rangers shortstop broke out of a hitting slump Wednesday with a two-run double that proved to be the winning hit.
Andrus admitted after Wednesday's game that he has been getting himself out. So he needed a refresher course.
He took early batting practice Wednesday and discussed his swing and his approach with hitting coach Dave Magadan.
"Dave understands the ABCs of hitting," Andrus said.
Andrus grounded out in the first and flew out in the fourth to stretch his skid to one hit in his last 18 at-bats. He changed his night, and the Rangers too, in the fifth inning.
Andrus' at-bat in the fifth set up his game-winning hit in the seventh. With two outs and a runner at first, Andrus slapped a fastball from Boston starter John Lackey into right field for a base hit. The Rangers didn't score in the inning -- David Murphy grounded out to second -- but it was a confidence boost for Andrus.
"It made we feel good about my swing," Andrus said.
Andrus was able to stay aggressive in the seventh against Uehara, and the confidence he gained with the swing in the fifth allowed him to pull the ball just enough to get it in between the Red Sox outfielders in left-center field.
"Sometimes I try to do too much," Andrus said. "I let the ball get to me and I went to the opposite field, proving my approach worked. The next at-bat I was able to use my hands and get a good swing. That's something that was missing the last five or six games. I got it back tonight."