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Nelson Cruz sheds batting gloves, slump

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Nelson Cruz found himself seventh in the batting order for the first time all season and wasn't a big fan of the move.

"Staying in the lineup is the only thing that matters," Cruz said. "I don't like the decision but the only thing that I care about is to be in the lineup."

He's likely to be in that spot again on Saturday after going 4-for-5 with two homers and 6 RBIs in the Rangers' 11-7 win over the Angels. Cruz was a triple shy of the cycle and busted loose after going 4-for-27 in his last seven games prior to Friday.

Manager Ron Washington moved Cruz down in the order in an effort to get him to relax and play more loose. Cruz looked that way on Friday. His first homer was launched 452 feet, the 10th-longest in Rangers Ballpark in Arlington history. His second came two innings later and pushed the Rangers' lead to 11-0 at the time.

He got all those hits without wearing batting gloves.

"I went to the cage and I went without the batting gloves and felt good," Cruz said.

So he didn't wear them in the game, either. There's a good chance we won't see those batting gloves on Saturday, either.