The Elvis Comeback Special
During a team workout toward the end of the All-Star break, Elvis received wise counsel from one of the greatest catalysts in Rangers history: Ivan “Pudge” Rodriguez. Like Elvis, Pudge also had experienced the self-imposed pressure that comes from wanting to prove the team had made the right decision in re-signing him to a lengthy contract extension.
The message from Pudge to Elvis was simple, but direct: you’ve already earned that money, so just go out and play your game. And based on the results, Elvis clearly seems to have taken Pudge’s advice to heart.
Since the All-Star break (and Pudge serving as the Yoda to Elvis’ Luke), the Rangers are 18-9, in no small part due to the desperately-needed offensive resurgence of Elvis. During that span, Elvis has hit .337, bringing his season average all the way back up to .260 (much closer to his career average). Meanwhile, his season OBP (.322), SLG (.313), and OPS (.635) are all rising, as well. He even hit his first home run of the season on Saturday night (yes, let’s say it all together: ELVIS HAS LEFT THE BUILDING!).
As great an addition as Alex Rios appears to be, having Elvis Andrus continue to perform at the level he’s shown throughout his career will be just as important to this team during their run toward the postseason.