ARLINGTON -- For the second straight day, two of the Rangers' biggest bats are missing in the starting lineup.
Elvis Andrus and Nelson Cruz got a day off as the Rangers faced the Royals on Tuesday night. Cruz, who has started all 36 games this season in right field, was one of 12 players in the Major Leagues who had played every inning in the field this year. Before Tuesday, Andrus missed just one game, a 5-3 win over the Mariners on April 12.
"We need them for the rest of the year, not just in May," said manager Ron Washington. "Nelson played every game. He needed one. Elvis has been grinding just like him. He needed a day. We've won with both of them in the lineup and we've lost with them not in the lineup. They need a day. Today is theirs."
Alberto Gonzalez filled in for Andrus at shortstop and batted eighth, where he batted Monday night when he was at second base filling in for Ian Kinsler.
"It's a long season," Andrus said. "I wasn't too happy about it, but I understand it."
In his last eight games, Nelson Cruz was batting .469 with two home runs and eight RBIs, while Andrus was batting .426 with 10 runs scored in May.
"I still have a potent lineup," Washington said. "Even with Cruz and Andrus out ... we've got enough."
Washington said he would like to get both Michael Young and Josh Hamilton a day off at some point during the Rangers' two-game series with the Athletics on Wednesday and Thursday.