Adrian Beltre looking for title with Rangers

One year removed from the Red Sox, Adrian Beltre is going to the World Series.

Adrian Beltre had a rough go of it last week.

First, he fouled a ball hard off his knee Wednesday, then became so ill during the weekend he had to  pass on the ALCS-clinching celebration Saturday night.

Well, maybe it wasn’t such a bad week after all for Beltre, who plays in his first-ever World Series, starting tonight against the NL champion Cardinals in St. Louis.

And certainly Beltre is having a better week, month and year than the team he left behind after last season. With the Red Sox targeting Adrian Gonzalez and moving Kevin Youkilis back to third, Beltre became the odd man out in Boston, despite hitting 28 homers with 102 RBIs in a contract year.

The defending AL?champion Rangers came calling, signing the 32-year-old Gold Glover to a six-year, $96 million deal.

Beltre proved last season was no fluke. Despite playing in 30 fewer games because of a leg injury, he increased his home run and RBI totals to 32 and 105. 

He hit three home runs against the Rays — the team that denied him a shot at facing his old teammates from Boston — in the ALDS clincher.

Perhaps most importantly, Beltre provided the Rangers with a strong clubhouse presence — something that was sorely missing in Boston in 2011.

“Beltre is a great addition, not only his leadership but his offensive prowess and his defense,” Rangers manager Ron Washington said. “You can’t ask for more. The relaxed atmosphere he creates on the bench is good.”

He’s not the only one

David?Murphy has had a strong postseason for the Rangers, too.
   
You might remember him from his time in the Red Sox organization — and a few big league games in 2006 and ’07.
   
Boston shipped him to Texas at the 2007 trade deadline in the deal for reliever Eric Gagne.
   
Murphy is hitting .391 with a 1.047?OPS in 23 at-bats during the playoffs.


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