On Wednesday, the Rangers shortstop went 1-for-4 with an RBI in Texas' 9-1 victory over Cleveland and has hits in each of his first 22 career games against the Indians, marking the longest career-opening hit streak by any player against the Indians dating to 1919. Andrus is hitting .388 during that stretch, and the hot streak could not come at a better time for the first-place Rangers.
The Rangers, going for their fourth consecutive win and a sweep of the Indians, lead the Angels by three games in the AL West and will send Alexi Ogando to the mound Thursday. Cleveland will counter with Fausto Carmona.
"[Andrus] is a young man that's wise beyond his years," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "He was taught very well as a baseball player coming up. The time he spent in Venezuela, the time he spent with the Atlanta Braves and the time he spent with the Texas Rangers, he was taught well. He's a gamer. He wants to be the man."
Washington is not surprised by his shortstop's production. In fact, you can argue he expected such progress from the young infielder.
"He's been through it, he knows what to expect," Washington said. "He came on the first year and replaced a Gold Glover [Michael Young], the second year he went to the All-Star Game and found himself in the World Series. [He] had some struggles earlier this year, but never backed down. That's experience."
As for Carmona, he is winless in his last five starts and has a 6.84 ERA over that span. He allowed three runs in 5 1/3 innings of a 7-3 loss to the White Sox on Saturday but did not factor into the decision.
Ogando was defeated by the Athletics on Saturday after allowing five runs (three earned) in five-plus innings.
Indians: Duncan enjoying productive stretch
While dazzling in left field, Shelley Duncan went 1-for-3 Wednesday and is hitting .286 this month with eight runs, two doubles, five home runs and 10 RBIs during that span.
Since July 3, he is batting .315 with five doubles, seven home runs, and 17 RBIs in 28 games.
Carlos Santana has 23 home runs this season, just two shy of Victor Martinez's club record of 25 homers by a switch-hitter set in 2007.Rangers: Beltre runs hit streak to 18 games
Adrian Beltre went 2-for-4 Wednesday to extend his hitting streak to a career-high 18 games. He's hitting .397 during that stretch and sports a .343 batting average in his last 52 games to lift his season average from .247 to .289.
Ogando is 5-8 with a 5.45 ERA in his last 15 starts after beginning the year 7-0 with a 2.10 ERA. He has lost three consecutive decisions.
The Rangers are 8-1 against the Indians this season and have won 10 of the last 11 games dating back to last season.
The Rangers have had at least 12 hits in seven straight games, the longest such streak in club history.
The Rangers are 48-29 at home this season. The 48 home wins are the most in the American League.