The Norman Transcript

Breaking News

National Sports

July 18, 2013

Quirky Beltre having another solid season in Texas

ARLINGTON, Texas — Adrian Beltre certainly has his quirks.

Beltre appeals his own checked swings. He has a strange dance of short shuffle steps in the batter’s box when a pitch is inside or at his feet. And the Gold Glove third baseman really hates being touched on the head — a fact that gets mercilessly exploited by his Texas Rangers teammates.

“It’s just part of who I am,” Beltre said. “The thing is, they do it when I do something good. ... That moment, I’m expecting that. I’m kind of happy because I’ve done something good for the team. But I still don’t like it.”

Though Beltre was left off the American League All-Star team for the first time in four seasons, he is hitting .316 with 21 home runs and 55 RBIs. He has seven homers in 13 games this month, each time scrunching his shoulders going into the dugout ready for the playful taps coming his way.

“We’re a fun-loving team, and that’s just one of those enjoyable moments that we have every single time that he hits a home run,” David Murphy said. “As much as he hates it, he seems to enjoy it at the same time.”

The 34-year-old Beltre is already in his 16th major league season — he was only 15 in the Dominican Republic when signed by the Dodgers in 1994, four years before his debut for Los Angeles.

“He’s still the same kind of kid, plays the same way,” said Chicago White Sox manager Robin Ventura, Beltre’s teammate with the Dodgers in 2003-04. “He was mature even as a kid. He was a great teammate. He had the respect of the clubhouse, that’s for sure.”

Beltre is now nearly halfway into his $96 million, six-year deal with the Rangers.

“He’s a big-time leader,” general manager Jon Daniels said. “He’s intense, but he’s always been playful. The guy has fun playing the game.”

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
National Sports
  • Sooners advance to Super Six

    BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Oklahoma, Georgia and LSU advanced to the Super Six of the NCAA women’s gymnastics championships....

    April 19, 2014

  • Can the Heat flip the switch?

    MIAMI — LeBron James was walking down the hallway that the Miami Heat call “Championship Alley” a few minutes after last season’s NBA Finals, when he decided the time was right to send a message. It wasn’t for his fans....

    April 19, 2014

  • No April, May or June Madness in NBA

    AP National Writer ATLANTA — If the playoff-bound Atlanta Hawks were in any other sport, they might have a glimmer of hope for winning a championship. The NBA? No way....

    April 19, 2014

  • Warriors and Clippers take mutual dislike into playoff series

    LOS ANGELES — As much as the Los Angeles Clippers and Golden State Warriors don’t like each other, they’re a lot alike in some ways....

    April 19, 2014

  • Fieger leads Senior PGA

    PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — Gene Fieger shot a 3-under 69 in windy conditions Thursday to take a four-stroke lead in the Senior PGA Professional National Championship....

    April 18, 2014

  • Kuchar builds on momentum

    HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. — There were no major letdowns for Masters contenders Matt Kuchar and Jordan Spieth at the RBC Heritage on Thursday. Kuchar, who tied for fifth at Augusta National, shot a bogey-free 5-under 66 to share the ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Angel Jimenez set for Champions Tour debut

    DULUTH, Ga. — Miguel Angel Jimenez’s starring role in the best Masters ever for players 50 and over was the perfect lead-in for his Champions Tour debut....

    April 18, 2014

  • Puig focuses on baseball despite issues

    SAN FRANCISCO — Yasiel Puig believes he has the support from his Los Angeles Dodgers teammates and the club to help him keep his focus on baseball despite challenges off the field....

    April 18, 2014

  • Wainwright two-hits Nats

    WASHINGTON — Adam Wainwright threw a two-hitter Thursday night for his seventh career shutout, chipped in at the plate with a double and single, and St. Louis benefited from four errors by Washington in the Cardinals’ 8-0 victory....

    April 18, 2014

  • Rangers edge M’s

    ARLINGTON, Texas — When Kevin Kouzmanoff was riding the buses in Double-A two seasons ago, he kept his focus on returning to the majors and providing the kind of production that he is now delivering for the Texas Rangers....

    April 18, 2014