ARLINGTON -- Andrelton Simmons received the day off in Wednesday's series finale against Washington and the Braves had an off-day on Thursday, so the 25-year-old shortstop feels refreshed and ready for the final stretch of the season.
The respite might be exactly what Simmons needed. In his first nine September games, Simmons went 4-for-31 at with no extra-base hits, seeing his batting average drop to .240.
"Getting two days in a row, it's good for the body, good for the mind to relax a little bit," Simmons said. "I was trying to be too technical instead of going up there to see ball, hit ball kind of thing."
Atlanta entered Friday's series opener against Texas only two games behind Pittsburgh for the second National League Wild Card spot. With the pressure mounting, Simmons is eager to produce and help the club anyway he can.
"[I'm] really hungry," Simmons said. "This time of the season, you don't care how you're doing. You just want to win the game."
Ryan Cox is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.