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March 29, 2012

Thursday's Rangers notes: Cruz, Andrus given night off; Feliz to start on three days' rest

Nelson Cruz said his right hand feels good, and he is not concerned about it with Opening Day eight days away. The Rangers are given Cruz the night off, though, and have Joey Butler starting in rightfield.

"I don't think it's that big of a deal," Cruz said.

Cruz was hit by a pitch on Wednesday night, as it grazed his knuckles. He left the game and iced it.

Here are a few other notes from Thursday:

* Elvis Andrus, sidelined with tightness in his right hip flexor, was given another day off. Andrus was expected to start tonight, but that has been pushed back to Friday. "I'm feeling good, going to do all of the workout today," Andrus said.

* Neftali Feliz will start Saturday's game on three days' rest. Feliz, who left a start last week with tightness in his right shoulder, is throwing a bullpen session today and, if that goes well, is expected to begin the season in the Rangers' rotation. Colby Lewis is expected to start the Cactus League finale on Sunday.

* Butler gets his first Cactus League start. He is a right-handed hitting outfielder, and could be a long shot candidate to be the Rangers' right-handed bat off the bench. Notably, Craig Gentry and Julio Borbon are not in the starting lineup tonight.

-- Drew Davison


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