ARLINGTON, Texas — Adrian Beltre could miss the rest of the regular season after an MRI on Friday showed a Grade 2 strain in his left hamstring.
The Rangers said Beltre is expected to be sidelined for a minimum of four weeks. That would take his recovery into the final weekend of the regular season in which Beltre got his 3,000th career hit.
“Disappointed, I feel like I let the team down,” Beltre said. “I try my best to find a way to get better soon and we’ll see how it goes.”
That does leave open the possibility that Beltre could be available if the Rangers make the playoffs.
Texas (66-67) went into the opener of a weekend series against the Los Angeles Angels four games back of the AL’s second wild card spot with 29 games to play.
Beltre was injured in the seventh inning of a 5-1 loss against Houston on Thursday on a slow short hopper. The 38-year-old third baseman fielded the ball and almost immediately hopped up awkwardly.
“I just reached for the ball and I feel a pop,” Beltre said. “I think the turf in Tampa didn’t help. Every time I go to places like that . I’m not a big fan of that (turf).”
Beltre has a .315 batting average, 16 homers, and 66 RBIs in 80 games this season.
“Those are MVP numbers if you spread that out over 162 games,” Rangers manager Jeff Banister said.
This will be the just second time in Beltre’s career that he hasn’t played at least 100 games in a season. Despite his injuries this season, Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said he isn’t concerned about Beltre’s long-term health.
“I don’t think the same aging curve that applies to the rest of us applies to Adrian,” Daniels said. “We’ll get through this and then we’ll see. He’s performing at an elite level that most people didn’t think he would . we’ve all learned to quit guessing on the opposite side of him.”
With Beltre out Joey Gallo will get the majority of the starts at third base. Gallo is tied for the third in the majors and second in the AL with 36 home runs this season.