BOSTON -- Michael Young made his first start of the season at shortstop on Monday, while Elvis Andrus was given the day off to rest his sore shoulder. Alberto Gonzalez normally plays shortstop when Andrus is out of the lineup, but manager Ron Washington put Young there on Monday.Washington said he did so because he wanted to use Geovany Soto at designated hitter. Soto is going to start at catcher on Tuesday, but Washington wanted to give Soto at-bats at Fenway Park leading up to that start. Washington said going with Young had nothing to do with the critical error that Gonzalez made in the 10th inning in Sunday's 7-6 loss to the Royals. "I don't use that type of stuff with my players, because I know Alberto can play," Washington said. Young has played just one game at shortstop since winning a Gold Glove at the position in 2008. The 35-year-old started a game at short late last season just in case he had to play there in the playoffs. He has not had any work at shortstop this season. "All my work has been at third, second or first," Young said. "I'll just go out there during batting practice, readjust my eyes to the angles and be ready to go. Hopefully, Elvis will get back as soon as possible. It should be fun. I always enjoy playing shortstop." Andrus banged his shoulder sliding head-first into home plate in the seventh inning on Sunday. He said it was a little sore, but he should be in the lineup on Tuesday.
Oswalt's role in Rangers bullpen unchanged
BOSTON -- Right-hander Roy Oswalt is going to stay in the Rangers' bullpen, even though he has made it clear to the club that he wants to be a starter."We view Roy as a productive member of our 12-man staff," assistant general manager Thad Levine said before the Rangers' game with the Red Sox on Monday. "He is pitching well out of the bullpen. We're always willing to listen to a request by players, but it is all dependent on the needs of the ballclub, and he is serving in a valuable role." Levine declined to say if Oswalt had requested a trade. "He wants to start, he has no bones about that," Levine said. "We have had internal conversations about that, but we prefer to keep the exact nature of those conversations private." Oswalt, who signed with the Rangers as a free agent on May 29, made six starts before he was moved to the bullpen. He has pitched twice in relief, and each time he pitched two scoreless innings. He pitched the seventh and eighth innings against the Royals on Sunday in a 6-6 game. Manager Ron Washington asked Oswalt if he could keep going and pitch the ninth. Oswalt declined. "To be clear, I asked him if he could go back out there," Washington said. "He said he was through. So we went to Robbie Ross. Managers do that all the time. "Since I've been here, when a player tells me he can't go, that's it. It ends right there. For me, it ends right there." Oswalt declined to comment when approached in the visitors' clubhouse at Fenway Park on Monday. Oswalt is in his 12th season in the Majors and has made just 15 career relief appearances as opposed to 332 starts. He was a two-time 20-game winner with the Astros in 2004-05 and has a career record of 163-95 with a 3.26 ERA. The Rangers signed him in May after Neftali Feliz went on the disabled list with a sprained right elbow. (Feliz is now out for the season after undergoing Tommy John surgery.) The Rangers signed Oswalt with the understanding -- but not a guarantee -- that he would be used as a starter. That was the case when he was called up on June 22, and Oswalt went 3-2 with a 6.49 ERA in six starts. The Rangers then acquired Ryan Dempster from the Cubs at the Trade Deadline, forcing Texas to decide between Oswalt and Scott Feldman for the final spot in the rotation. The Rangers gave it to Feldman, who is currently riding a six-game winning streak. So Oswalt went to the bullpen, and that's where he will be used at this point. "He's part of the ballclub and an important member of the Rangers' staff," Levine said. "We don't expect that to change. We're in the midst of a pennant race and every game counts. It's our job to put together the best possible team we can so we can be competitive day in and day out. "Alexi Ogando was an All-Star as a starter and went to the bullpen this year, because we felt that's what was best for the ballclub. We always ask our players to be a part of a winning dynamic, and we try to employ our players in the best possible spot. That's what we're doing now."
Olt asks for extra work with Washington
BOSTON -- Infielder Mike Olt was out early working with manager Ron Washington on Monday, one day after committing a throwing error that brought home the winning run in the Rangers' 7-6 loss in 10 innings to the Royals."I just wanted to get out there, it doesn't reflect on what happened yesterday," Olt said. "We did a lot of work on my footwork. That's the key." Washington said Olt came into his office on Monday and asked for the early work. Washington, who loves teaching infield defense, was ready immediately. "I think he knew I wanted to go out there and do some sweating," Washington said. Olt was not in the lineup on Monday, but Washington said he would play on Tuesday, when Red Sox left-hander Jon Lester takes the mound. Washington also said Olt will play the field.
The skipper said he doesn't want to use Olt as a designated hitter at this point."He's too young to DH," Washington said.
Rangers trying to trade catcher Torrealba
BOSTON -- The Rangers are still trying to work out a trade for catcher Yorvit Torrealba, who was designated for assignment last week. The Rangers have until Friday to work something out or they'll likely just release him. But Texas isn't close to a deal, assistant general manager Thad Levine said."Not at this stage," Levine said. "Our goal is to find him a big league job." Torrealba was designated after the Rangers acquired Geovany Soto from the Cubs. At the time, the Rangers were hopeful they would be able to trade Torrealba. The Nationals appeared to be their best chance, but they addressed their catching situation by acquiring Kurt Suzuki from the Athletics.
Double-A Frisco outfielder Engel Beltre was named the Texas League Player of the Month for July. Beltre hit .308 in July with six home runs, six triples, four doubles, 15 RBIs and 25 runs. Joey Gallo, the 39th overall player taken in the 2012 First-Year Player Draft, hit his 16th home run on Sunday to tie the Arizona Rookie League record. He has nine more home runs than anybody else in the league. Michael Kirkman was the losing pitcher on Sunday in the Rangers' 7-6 loss to the Royals. Kirkman has three career losses, and they have all been walk-off losses. He gave up a ninth-inning home run to Brandon Hicks in Oakland on July 18, and he lost in the 12th inning last year on June 16 at Yankee Stadium on a game-winning single by Brett Gardner. : Manager Ron Washington, in reviewing Elvis Andrus' missed attempt on a ninth-inning suicide squeeze on Sunday, said he just wanted to see more of an effort to bunt the ball.
Said Washington: "Whatever you've got to do in that situation, you've got to do it. Even if you don't get that bat on the ball, you might distract the catcher or at least foul it off."
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.