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June 05, 2013

Leonys Martin atop Rangers' contingency plan if Nelson Cruz is suspended

An outfield of, from left to right, David Murphy, Craig Gentry and Leonys Martin would be manager Ron Washington's initial alignment if right fielder Nelson Cruz were suspended because of his link to a Miami anti-aging clinic.

The Rangers would lose a significant amount of power if Cruz, who hit his 14th homer last night as an ESPN story was breaking about MLB getting Biogenesis of America founder Tony Bosch to flip on his former big-league clients who allegedly purchased performance-enhancing drugs from him.

Washington suggested that the front office would have a big say in how the Rangers would proceed if Cruz were to receive a 50-game suspension. To replace the power, they would have to go outside the organization.

Mitch Moreland, who played in the outfield in the minor leagues, could be considered, but playing outfield in the past has had a negative affect on his legs. Lance Berkman could play capably enough at first base, though, said Washington.

Cruz, meanwhile, said that he is trying to not let the report and a possible suspension become a distraction. He said that he hasn't met with MLB investigators, but was expecting to do so before the World Baseball Classic.

"I don't want to worry about stuff I cannot control," he said. "My job is to go out there and play the game."

Cruz said that he hears about the case everywhere he goes, and doesn't see that relenting anytime soon.

"It's something you don't want to be involved in," he said.

-- Jeff Wilson

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