Adrian Beltre at third, bats third for Game 4

ByJean-Jacques Taylor ESPN logo
Monday, October 12, 2015

ARLINGTON, Texas --Adrian Beltre, who has not played since the second inning of Game 1 of the American League Division Series because of a back strain, will bat third and play third base for the Texas Rangers on Monday afternoon at Globe Life Park.

The club announced the change to its lineup about an hour before Game 4.

Beltre injured his back sliding into second base during the first inning of Game 1. He drove in a run with a single in the second inning but could barely run to first base and left the game.

The Rangers said Beltre took batting practice at the club's indoor batting cages and did some light jogging Monday before deciding he could play.

Texas eagerly awaits the return of his bat to the lineup. Beltre, who had 53 RBIs in his last 48 games, hit .344 from Sept. 1 through the end of the regular season.

"We feel like if Adrian comes in and says he's ready to go, then he's ready to go and he'll be in the lineup," manager Jeff Banister said. "If not, then we'll post up with the players we have available to us and we'll play a game of baseball at the level we typically play."

The Rangers lead their series with the Toronto Blue Jays 2-1, but the heart of Texas' batting order has struggled without Beltre. Shin-Soo Choo (1-for-13), Prince Fielder (1-for-12), Mitch Moreland (0-for-6) and Josh Hamilton (2-for-13) are hitting a combined .091 with zero homers and one RBI in the series.