MINNEAPOLIS -- Rich Harden made his first bullpen appearance for the Rangers on Saturday, allowing three runs in two innings. What's interesting is that the Rangers used him even though Cliff Lee had not yet been scratched from Tuesday's start.That's an indication that the Rangers want Harden to get used to the bullpen rather than make a spot start, because that's where they feel he can help them down the stretch and, possibly, in the playoffs. "He can come in there for a couple of innings and let it go rather than worrying about staying out there for seven innings," manager Ron Washington said. "He can just come in and pound the strike zone. His stuff may play better down there."
Andrus to miss time with hamstring tightness
MINNEAPOLIS -- Elvis Andrus will be out of the lineup for at least a couple of days with some tightness in his right hamstring.Andrus said that he has been dealing with the problem for a couple of weeks, and came out of Saturday's game after three innings because he was concerned with how he felt. "It's not that bad," Andrus said. "It's not hurting, but for a while it has been the same way, really tight. Yesterday I got a weird sensation when I tried to run hard. It felt like it pulled back to the high part of the hamstring. I let [manager Ron Washington] know so it didn't get worse." Cristian Guzman took over for Andrus at shortstop on Saturday and started there on Sunday.
The Rangers open a four-game series on the artificial turf of Toronto's Rogers Centre on Monday afternoon, and Washington will be cautious about how he uses Andrus there. The artificial turf can be hard on the legs of players who are not used to playing on it. Andrus will not start on Monday, and he may not play at all during the four-game series."If he's not well, I'm going to give him what he needs," Washington said. "It's nothing to worry about," Andrus said. "Maybe a few days and I'll be ready to get back in there. It's nothing serious." Guzman, a former Twin, had two hits after taking over for Andrus on Saturday. He was on the disabled list from Aug. 14-31 with a strained right quadriceps muscle, but Washington had him out there on Sunday instead of Andres Blanco. "He's come back looking like a different guy than before he went on the disabled list," Washington said. "He's moving around a lot better."
German may be the next callup
MINNEAPOLIS -- With Josh Hamilton and Elvis Andrus down with injuries, the Rangers are considering adding a player to the roster. Utility infielder Esteban German could be the guy.German can play multiple positions, including the outfield, and he would give the Rangers speed off the bench. He is hitting .282 with a .371 on-base percentage and 49 stolen bases for Triple-A Oklahoma City. The problem is that German is not on the 40-man roster. The Rangers have a full 40-man roster, although they could put Craig Gentry on the 60-day disabled list if needed. General manager Jon Daniels said the club has not made a decision on anybody yet. "We'll take it a day at a time and see where Josh is," Daniels said. "We can go get somebody at any point. It's something we'll look at."
Oklahoma City wraps up division title
MINNEAPOLIS -- Triple-A Oklahoma City has clinched the Pacific Coast League's American South Division title. The RedHawks wrapped up the title on Saturday night, when second-place Albuquerque lost to Round Rock.This will be the fifth time since 2002 that the RedHawks have made the playoffs, and they did so despite being constantly raided by the Rangers all season. "I had a talk with the players yesterday, and I told them how proud I was of them and how hard they had worked all summer," Oklahoma City manager Bobby Jones told MLB.com's Ashley Marshall. "They're a great bunch of guys, and I told them that if it was meant to happen, it would happen." Oklahoma City has been the Rangers' Triple-A affiliate since 1983. The club is switching to Round Rock next season.
Manager Ron Washington had two hits in the Twins Legends Game on Sunday afternoon but appeared to strain a hamstring chasing a fly ball in the outfield. The official announcement was he left the game because of "general soreness."... Ian Kinsler's ninth-inning home run on Saturday was the first by the Rangers in Target Field. ... The Rangers have 151 infield hits this season, the most in the Majors. The Rangers have never led the league in infield hits since STATS Inc. started tracking that in 1987.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.