ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Adrian Beltre is likely done for the season after playing 13 games with a strained left hamstring before the Texas Rangers were eliminated from playoff contention.
Beltre, who is in his 20th major league season and got his 3,000th career hit in July, wasn’t in the lineup for the series finale against the AL West champion Houston Astros on Wednesday.
“We’re at the point where we’d really like for Adrian to heal up,” manager Jeff Banister said. “Exceptional player, been able to put himself through what you guys have seen to play and give this team everything that he’s got in an effort to try to get us to the playoffs.”
After Beltre was hurt fielding a grounder on Aug. 31, and an MRI showed a Grade 2 strain, the Rangers said the 38-year-old third baseman was expected to be sidelined a minimum of four weeks. But Beltre returned two weeks later as the designated hitter and played every game until the Rangers were eliminated from the AL wild-card chase.
“Obviously I have an injury that’s not healed yet. It’s probably smart not to risk it, and end the season on the injured list,” Beltre said. “I don’t like blow it up because I was trying to help us get to the playoffs. But like now, it’s not smart. I don’t play for numbers. ... I want to be there for the guys, but I’m kind of dumb to be playing.”
Center fielder Carlos Gomez (ankle) and catcher Robinson Chirinos (hamstring) also were out of the lineup a day after the Rangers were mathematically eliminated from the playoff chase. First baseman Mike Napoli hasn’t played since Sept. 14 because of a stress reaction in his lower right leg.
Banister said those guys were in a similar situation as Beltre for the rest of the season.
After being the DH for 12 games, Beltre played Tuesday at third base for the first time since getting hurt.
Beltre, who is signed with the Rangers through next season, missed the first 51 games this year because of calf issues. He has had several leg issues, including missing more than a month during the 2011 season after straining his left hamstring.
In his 93 games this season, he hit .311 with 17 homers and 71 RBIs. He became the 31st player overall and first from the Dominican Republic to get 3,000 career hits on July 30. He now ranks 26th on the all-time list with 3,047.
“For me, it’s a disappointing season no matter what I do personally. Disappointed because I believe this team had a good enough team to play in the playoffs and hopefully do something even bigger than that,” Beltre said. “But the fact that I wasn’t able to be in the field enough to help these guys ... And to me, that’s a disappointment.”