Nelson Cruz returns to the lineup in the Pittsburgh series


Nelson Cruz finally returned to the lineup on Tuesday night and back into his regular spot in Right Field.  He missed 22 games while on his second stint on the disabled list of the season due to hamstring problems.  I actually had the opportunity to interview him on June 7th and you can find the write up of that interview here

He was very nice in the interview and it was an awesome opportunity.  Cruz’s season has started off strong with him being in the top of the outfield All-Star balloting at one point only second to Ichiro Suzuki.  He has been putting up some of the best numbers of his career when he has been healthy.  I am afraid that the time missed and the resurgence of Josh Hamilton has diminished his All-Star chances; although he has had a pretty good season so far.

In 35 games this season he has hit .325 with 38 hits, 10 home runs and 39 RBI”s.  He has also walked 16 times.  I believe that if had not missed time with the injuries he would be at the top of the all-star balloting.  In his first series back against the Pirates he has went 3 for 10 at the plate with five RBI’s.  His best game was last night where he went 3 for 4 with 3 RBI’s and one walk.  So he may take a little time to get around at the plate, but he should be back in his All Star form soon.

The most likely canidate to appear in the All Star game for the Rangers is left fielder Josh Hamilton.  In 69 games this season he has 96 hits for a .345 average.  He has hit 17 home runs and has 53 RBI’s.  Micheal Young is the only Ranger that has appeared in more games than him at 72 to Hamilton’s 69.  So he has been pretty consistent all season long and if elected to the all star game, he has already elected to not participate in the Home Run Derby, so no worries Rangers fans, that should be one less thing going against him having a strong second half.