Nelson Cruz sits, says tightness gone

SEATTLE -- Texas Rangers outfielder Nelson Cruz is not in the lineup Thursday for a second straight game against the Seattle Mariners but said his quad no longer feels tight.

Rangers manager Ron Washington said he didn't want to have Cruz play in the cold weather in Seattle and thhat because the Rangers have a difficult travel situation afterward, probably landing around 6 a.m. CT, Cruz is not expected to play Friday against the New York Yankees, either.

"If he's ready, he'll play Saturday and that's my intention," Washington said.

Cruz, who was pulled late in Tuesday's game after feeling the quad tighten up on him while running to first on an infield hit and later on a catch in right field, said he ran outside at 80 percent Thursday and worked out. He said he can pinch hit if needed.

Cruz missed 51 games in 2010 because of three separate stints on the disabled list with hamstring issues. In April of that season, Cruz didn't play for a few games then went back in the lineup and felt the hamstring before ending up on the disabled list.

Washington and Cruz believe this is a different situation.

"They have ways to test the muscle and he's gotten treatment and feels good," Washington said.

Cruz reiterated that he doesn't think he'll be out more than a few days.

"This could be a blessing because we can get him some days off," Washington said.

Cruz has been in a slump, hitting .161 (10-for-62) in his past 16 games to drop from a .302 average to a season-low .219. He is 2-for-20 on the club's current road trip.

Richard Durrett covers the Rangers for ESPNDallas.com.