The Texas Rangers have signed second baseman Ian Kinsler to a five-year $75 million contract extension that runs through the 2017 season with an option for 2018, according to a report on the team’s website.
Kinsler, 29, hit .255 last year but drew 89 walks, stole 30 bases in just 34 attempts, and scored 121 runs in the leadoff spot for the two-time defending American League champions. In addition to being an excellent base runner, the two-time All-Star Kinsler has some pop in his bat as he connected for 32 home runs and 34 doubles while driving in 77 runs last season.
How the Rangers swing this financially remains to be seen. Texas may not be able to sign outfielders Josh Hamilton and Nelson Cruz long-term and the team’s best prospects are middle infielders like Kinsler, leading some to believe the Rangers might want to eventually move him to the outfield.