FRISCO, Texas -- Rangers second baseman Ian Kinsler, one of the headliners at the Winter Caravan stop at Dr Pepper Ballpark in Frisco (home of the Rangers' Double-A affiliate) on Saturday, said he doesn't have anything new to report on a possible long-term extension, adding that there haven't been many discussions with the club in that regard so far this offseason.
Part of the reason for that is the front office has been dealing with pressing concerns in a shortened offseason after returning to the World Series for a second time. Kinsler is under contract through the 2013 season (he'll make $7 million in 2012 and has a club option for $10 million in 2013), so he doesn't have to be signed up long-term right now. The club spent a month signing Yu Darvish during the exclusive negotiating window after winning the bidding for the Japanese star. And now they've got to see if they can get Nelson Cruz, Mike Napoli and Elvis Andrus signed to avoid arbitration hearings in the next few weeks.
"I would love to stay here. I’ve stated that and made that pretty well known," Kinsler said. "I’ve got two years left, so it’s not urgent. But the longer they wait, the more difficult it’s going to be."
Kinsler added that his first long-term contract took 18 months to put together.
"These things don’t easily come about," Kinsler said. "It takes a lot of conversation and thinking on both sides. It’s not just a couple of phone calls and strike a deal, especially the second contract when they’re investing a lot more money. Who knows how long it will take?"
Kinsler said he's itching to get to spring training and plans to report early. His focus remains on helping get the club back to the World Series in 2012. He said earlier this offseason that he felt 100 percent for the first time since spring training of 2010, when he rolled his right ankle during drills.