Amid reports of unhappiness Ian Kinsler repeats willingness to change positions for Rangers

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Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com writing yesterday that Ian Kinsler “is not thrilled with the idea of changing positions less than a year after signing a five-year, $75 million contract extension” led to Kinsler being asked about the situation last night and he reiterated the willingness to play wherever the Rangers want him:

My feeling is whatever I need to help this team win. I signed a long-term extension to win a championship here and if they think me at first is going to help win a championship, I’m all for it.

That seems pretty straightforward and matches what Kinsler said publicly about the situation last month too, which makes Rosenthal’s report an interesting one.

General manager Jon Daniels was also asked about the situation last night and replied: “We’re just trying to figure out how many winning players we can get on the field together. Nothing’s set in stone, but we wanted Ian to have the chance to digest it and prepare if we ultimately go that way.”

Yasmani Grandal played himself out of NLCS Game 4

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Dodgers catcher Yasmani Grandal has not had a good postseason. Entering Monday night’s NLCS Game 3, he was batting .111/.238/.278 in 21 trips to the plate across the NLDS and the first two games of the NLCS.

Defense has also been an issue for Grandal. In Game 1 of the NLCS, Grandal was on the hook for two passed balls. In the sixth inning of Game 3 Monday night, he couldn’t corral a curve in the dirt, which allowed Travis Shaw to score the Brewers’ second run of the night. Starter Walker Buehler was charged with a wild pitch. In the eighth, with Ryan Braun on first base and Shaw at the plate, Grandal again couldn’t corral a pitch in the dirt, allowing Braun to move to second base. Fortunately for the Dodgers, Alex Wood was able to escape the inning with no damage.

Manager Dave Roberts said that Austin Barnes, not Grandal, will start behind the plate for Game 4 on Tuesday night, Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times reports. That comes as no surprise at all. When Grandal struck out with the bases loaded in the ninth inning, Dodger fans regaled him with boos.

Barnes will be an upgrade defensively, but he’s lacking with the bat. He had an 0-for-3 performance in Game 2, though with an RBI, bringing his career slash line in the playoffs to .200/.281/.300 across 57 plate appearances. During the regular season, his career 100 adjusted OPS is a fair bit behind Grandal’s 115. Roberts is trading offense for defense in Game 4. Rich Hill will get the start opposite the Brewers’ Gio González.