Rangers look to get offense back on track

ARLINGTON, Texas -- The Texas Rangers offense seemingly continues to spiral out of control. Monday's 8-2 loss to the Detroit Tigers showcased a struggling offense that seems to change from day to day.

"We’re just inconsistent right now," David Murphy said. "We’re winning, and that’s the bottom line."

He's right. Despite Monday's loss, the Rangers have won 12 of their last 16 games, and it hasn't been because of a great showing by the offense. There have been multiple guys going through slumps, and it starts with the team's best offensive weapon, Josh Hamilton.

On Monday, Hamilton was 1-for-4 with a two-run home run, but that's been about the highlight of the month for him. Yes, he missed a few games with an intestinal virus, but he is still hitting just .197 in June with two home runs and nine RBIs.

Michael Young, the most seasoned veteran on the team, isn't doing any better. He is hitting .178 (8-for-45) in his last 12 games. During Mike Napoli's last 11 games, he's only 7-for-39 (.179).

Ian Kinsler's average over the last 12 games has been a little better, at .200 during that time frame, but his on-base percentage is just .259 over those games.

“We have a potential that we are not playing to, but there’s no reason to dwell on that because we’re winning games," Murphy said. "It’s going to happen, and it always happens about this time of year. We’re just going to keep battling until it does happen."

But it's not all bad. Adrian Beltre has been on a tear as of late, going 21-for-41 (.512) over his last 11 games, and despite going 0-for-4 Monday, Nelson Cruz is 7-for-22 (.318) with two home runs and eight RBIs during the last six games. David Murphy is 8-for-25 (.320) in his last 10 games.

The offense knows it can score runs, and that it can get on a roll at any moment.

"That’s the beauty of this game," Murphy said. "Sometimes, it just takes one or two at-bats in a game and it can change the outcome extremely. This offense is full of a bunch of professionals. We’re going to keep fighting. We’re going to keep making adjustments. We’re going to get to the point where everybody knows what we can be."

However, it's a little worrisome that this trend has continued as long as it has. But overall hitting hasn't been as big an issue as hitting with runners in scoring position, where the Rangers are 15-for-65 (.231) over the last seven games. What's impressive is that Texas is 5-2 in those contests.

“It’s not really something we’re going to dwell on negatively," Young said. "We’ve got a talented offense. We feel like if guys are out there, we’re going to knock them in.”

The Rangers still lead majors in average (.282), OPS (.800) and runs per game (5.2).

So will this offense come out of this slump they're currently in? The numbers say yes. And if they do, watch out. This team could be nearly impossible to beat.