Ian Kinsler let fly with unfiltered opinions regarding his former club and GM this week in an interview with ESPN The Magazine‘s Robert Sanchez. “I hope they go 0-162” Kinsler told Sanchez referring to the Rangers. And then to soften the blow (at least in his mind I guess) Kinsler went on to say, “I got friends, and I love my friends, but I hope they lose their ass.” In the interview Kinsler let loose with his obvious frustrations from being traded to the Tigers this off-season by the Rangers, citing issues with the team and GM Jon Daniels in particular. Kinsler pulled no punches when discussing Daniels calling him a “sleazeball” and blaming Daniels’ ego for pushing Hall-of-Famer Nolan Ryan out the door.
“It’s not worth defending,” Daniels told Sanchez. “I’m really proud of the group we’ve got here, the decisions we’ve made, the people we have in place and what we’re building. Obviously, he’s a competitor. That’s part of what it’s about. (But) I hope our players are pissed about that.”
Daniels went on to perhaps reference one of the reasons why he dealt Kinsler in the first place: “This probably reinforces that the trade itself was probably a good thing for all parties involved,” Daniels said. “He was a good player on the greatest teams of franchise history. A key part of that, we’re moving on and he’s moving on. That’s where we’ll leave it. …”
Kinsler said his anger towards the organization started when teammate and friend Michael Young was traded to the Phillies in December of 2012, when according to Kinsler, Young declined the Rangers’ request to move to first base to make room for rookie Jurickson Profar. His distaste then culminated when he learned he was traded to Detroit via the internet (Daniels responded to that allegation by saying he was on a plane to Tucson when the trade was somehow leaked and that he left Kinsler a voicemail once he landed).
Whatever the true facts are, and we’ll probably never know for sure, we do know that Ian Kinsler has now joined the dynamic duo of C.J. Wilson and Josh Hamilton as former popular Rangers now seen as villains by the Arlington faithful. And that’s not a bad thing. The best baseball rivalries contain a little bit of hatred in them. Red Sox vs. Yankees, Cubs vs. Cardinals, Giants vs. Dodgers – they all come with a little something extra each time they take the field against each other. And this certainly makes for a little extra drama and worth a circle of the date on the Rangers schedule when the Tigers come to town on June 24th for a three game series.