LAKELAND, Fla. – In an interview with ESPN the Magazine, Detroit second baseman Ian Kinsler said he hoped his former team, the Texas Rangers, goes winless this year and called Rangers general manager Jon Daniels “a sleazeball.”
Kinsler said in the story he was asked to bear too much of a leadership role with the team after Michael Young left. He said he didn’t like being asked to move to first base in 2013 to make room for middle-infield prospect Jurickson Profar (something the Rangers didn’t do, after Kinsler voiced his reluctance).
Kinsler told the magazine he blamed Daniels for the departure of Rangers chief executive officer Nolan Ryan, who left the organization in October.
“Daniels is a sleazeball,” Kinsler was quoted as saying. “He got in good with the owners and straight pushed Ryan out. He thought all the things he should get credit for, Ryan got credit for. It’s just ego.”
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Asked about the story Tuesday, Kinsler said, “It’s written. It’s out there. I’m not happy about it. The story was written for drama and taken a little out of context.”
Meanwhile, Texas manager Ron Washington said, “As an organization, our unity hasn’t dissipated one bit. The reason this organization is moving forward is the hard work that Jon Daniels and his group has done to try to supply us with players we can compete for a championship with.
“Opinions are just that. It doesn’t make it reality. To me, Jon Daniels has been one of the best general managers in the game.”
Orioles add Santana
TAMPA, Fla. – Johan Santana, a two-time AL Cy Young Award winner, agreed to a minor-league contract with the Baltimore Orioles as he tries to come back from the second major operation on his left shoulder.
Santana would get a $3 million, one-year deal if added to the 40-man roster and would have the chance to earn an additional $5.05 million in roster and performance bonuses.
The 34-year-old left-hander became a free agent after completing a $137.5 million, six-year contract with the New York Mets, who declined a $25 million option and paid a $5.5 million buyout.
Santana, 139-78 with a 3.20 ERA in 12 seasons with Minnesota and the Mets, missed last season after an operation April 2.
• Curtis Granderson hit two home runs as the New York Mets beat the Houston Astros 6-2 in an exhibition game in Port St. Lucie, Fla.
• Former Mariner Raul Ibanez homered off Yu Darvish and the Los Angeles Angels beat Texas 7-4 in Tempe, Ariz.
• Detroit outfielder Andy Dirks will have back surgery and is expected to miss about three months.
• Shortstop and captain Derek Jeter of the New York Yankees is 0 for 9 in four games.