Tigers' Kinsler happy for Josh Hamilton
Minneapolis — Ian Kinsler, for one, is happy to see Josh Hamilton going back to Texas.
"He's a Texas Ranger in my mind," Kinsler said.
Kinsler and Hamilton were teammates in Texas from 2008 to 2012. In those years, the Rangers went to the World Series in 2010 and 2011. Hamilton was a five-time All-Star. It seemed like he burned his bridges in Texas when he left to sign a $125 million with the Angels.
But, after suffering a relapse in his battle with substance abuse, the Angels were so hasty to get rid of him, they are paying the Rangers $73 million to take him back.
"I hope it's a good move for him," Kinsler said. "It would be nice to see him have something positive to work with. He left on rough terms (as did Kinsler after the 2013 season), but he played incredible baseball when he was there. It's nice to see him go back there."
Kinsler was asked if the Rangers had a better support system in place for Hamilton.
"I don't know what happened in the Angels organization or what they had in place or what his daily life was like," he said. "I know he enjoyed his time in Texas. We had a really good team when he was there.
"We all loved each other and supported each other. I hope it's a good atmosphere for him. I hope he's comfortable and gets back to playing baseball. Because when he's good, he is a lot of fun to watch."
Asked how he felt before the game Monday, center fielder Rajai Davis shrugged and said, "It just feels normal to me."
Davis felt a tightness in his groin after he singled in the eighth inning. He came out of the game and he was held out of the lineup Monday as a precaution.
"Raj actually feels good today," manager Brad Ausmus said. "He doesn't feel the tightness anymore. It was tightness. He didn't pull or strain anything.
"But he felt it tighten up, so he was concerned if he tried to run hard something would give. It was probably wise that he came out of the game, because he feels good today. He didn't feel anything with the manipulations. We'll give him the day and just see how he's doing."
Ausmus said Davis is medically cleared to play.
"I would like to try to give him a day," he said. "But if we need him, we could use him."
Around the horn
With Davis out of the lineup, and the Tigers facing left-hander Tommy Milone, Ausmus adjusted his batting order batting Kinsler leadoff, Jose Iglesias second and left-handed hitting Anthony Gose ninth.
Did he consider hitting Iglesias leadoff?
"I think hitting leadoff's a little different and Kinsler's done it many times before," he said. "That's the only reason (he didn't)."
…Right-handed reliever Bruce Rondon (on the DL with biceps tendonitis) was scheduled to throw a bullpen Monday – 20 fastballs, five change-ups, five sliders. Ausmus hadn't gotten a report on how it went before the game.
Chris McCosky on Twitter @cmccosky