03/10/2013 9:48 PM ET
Andrus, others return from World Baseball Classic
By T.R. Sullivan / MLB.com
GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Elvis Andrus is on his way back to Arizona and has something waiting for him when he arrives.
One of his teammates posted a "Welcome Back Elvis" sign on his locker Sunday morning after the news that Venezuela had been knocked out in the first round of the World Basketball Classic.
"Elvis was talking garbage about who was going to come back first," manager Ron Washington said. "He told [Nelson] Cruz he would be the first one to come back. Now Elvis is coming back. They couldn't wait to get on Elvis. Somebody sent him a text message this morning. They told him he's got early work at 8:30 this morning."
Venezuela's final game was Sunday in Puerto Rico. Washington said he expects Andrus to report immediately back to Surprise.
"Why would you want to hang around Puerto Rico?" Washington asked. "If you just had your heart snatched out of you over something you really wanted, why would you want to hang around there?"
Spain and Mexico also failed to advance, so the Rangers will also get outfielder Engel Beltre and catcher Junior Felix back soon.
Beltre may join Dominican Classic team in Round 2
GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre says he will know in a few days if he will join the Dominican Republic in the second round of the World Baseball Classic.
There are two issues at hand: Beltre is not happy with the way he is swinging the bat, and officials from the Dominican Republic are double-checking the rule about adding players to the tournament. Beltre was on the provisional roster originally submitted.
"I talked to the general manager and he said he would check and let me know in the next day or two," Beltre said. "But they don't need me. They've got a pretty good team. The only question was starting pitching, but they're doing OK. I hope they go and win the whole thing."
Beltre was 1-for-3 on Sunday in the Rangers 7-6 victory over the Indians, leaving him 4-for-16 on the spring. He missed the first ten days of Cactus League play because of a strained right calf muscle and has played in just five of the Rangers' first 16 games.
"I've only had 10-to-15 at-bats," Beltre said. "It's just the fact that I'm not recognizing pitches. If I'm looking for one pitch, I can hit it, but I'm not tracking the ball like I want to. It could take 2-to-3 days, or it could take a month. I really don't know."
Beltre joked that if the Dominican Republic really needs somebody, they should ask Jeff Baker. He went 2-for-3 against the Indians on Sunday and is now hitting .500 (15-for-30) on the spring.
"If they want to win, they should put him on our team," Beltre said. "But he's American. If he starts dating a girl from the Dominican, he's right there."
Moreland ready to get back into game action
GOODYEAR, Ariz. - First baseman Mitch Moreland was out of the lineup for a second straight game on Sunday while dealing with some tightness in his left quad muscle. There is a good chance he could return either Monday against the Giants or Tuesday against the Brewers.
"I feel fine," Moreland said. "I've been feeling it the last week or so, and it was not getting any better so they said, 'Let's take a couple of days off.' I tried to talk my way back into the lineup today, but it didn't work."
Moreland, who is getting a chance to show he can hit, has played in 10 games and is hitting .333 (8-for-24) with two home runs and six RBIs.
"He's having fun, that's the key for him," manager Ron Washington said. "He's got the ability, he just has to trust it and have fun."
With Moreland out, Jeff Baker started at first base on Sunday. Baker went into the game hitting .481, which was tied for the second highest average in the Cactus League. He was also tied for second with eight runs scored.
Harrison, sidelined with toe issue, may play this week
GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Pitcher Matt Harrison, who was scratched from his last start because of toe inflammation on his left foot, threw a full bullpen on Sunday without any problems. The Rangers have decided not to send him back to Dallas for further examination.
Harrison, who was scratched from Saturday's start against the Padres, could get into a game later this week. But the Rangers are still listing Yu Darvish as the starter against the Giants on Monday and Alexi Ogando against the Brewers on Tuesday. The Rangers are off on Wednesday before playing the Athletics on Thursday and the Giants on Friday.
Kyle McClellan is also getting healthy again. He came out of Saturday's live batting practice session without any problems and will likely be one of the pitchers used against the Brewers on Tuesday. McClellan has not yet pitched in a Cactus League game because of muscle soreness in the back of his right shoulder.
Wilmer Font (shoulder inflammation) also threw live batting practice on Sunday and could be ready for a game.
• Justin Grimm had a 18.69 ERA going into Sunday's 7-6 victory over the Indians. But he held the Indians to one run over the last three innings to get the win.
"He gave us three. It wasn't easy, but he got the outs we needed. His breaking ball was working and his fastball was down in the zone. I'm happy for him. Hopefully this will give him a little more confidence," Washington said.
• Baker was 2-for-3 with singles in his first two at-bats on Sunday. That gave him a streak of eight straight plate appearances with seven hits and one walk. He grounded out in his third at-bat to end the streak.
• Craig Gentry hit a home run on Sunday, his second of the spring. The Rangers have hit home runs in nine of 10 games.
• Former first baseman Pete O'Brien and pitcher Jose Guzman are in camp this week as special instructors.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.