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Monday, January 3, 2011
Rangers feel out Young on position change

By Richard Durrett

ARLINGTON, Texas -- The Rangers did reach out to Michael Young to get his thoughts on a possible position change should they make some offseason moves that require it and Young wasn't interested in moving from third base.

It should be noted that just because they talked to Young doesn't necessarily mean they are lining things up to sign Adrian Beltre. But the club has to at least broach the topic with the team leader in case something happens.

Young, 34, has not talked to the media much at all this winter and he could not be reached for comment on Monday. He's moved twice in his career already. He went from second base to shortstop for Alfonso Soriano in 2004 and shifted to third base in 2009 so that Elvis Andrus could slide in at shorstop.

Young wasn't a fan of moving from shortstop just months after he won his first Gold Glove Award, but by the time spring training started he was busy learning third base and helping Andrus make the transition to the majors.

Should the Rangers sign Beltre, Young could become a super utility player in the infield and take some swings as a DH. Maybe he could even transition to first base, though the club is high on Mitch Moreland.

Stay tuned. But the club is smart to reach out to Young even if the scenario doesn't actually happen. Yes, he's making $16 million for each of the next three seasons and they don't need his permission to do anything. But he's a veteran and the leader of the clubhouse. He deserves the courtesy of a discussion and at least they've done that.