Ian Kinsler has been pretty outspoken about the Texas Rangers organization since they traded him to the Detroit Tigers in exchange for currently injured first baseman Prince Fielder during the offseason. In fact, Kinsler was quoted in ESPN Magazine saying that general manager Jon Daniels was a sleazeball for pushing out former team president Nolan Ryan, and that he personally hoped they would go 0-162 during the regular season.
He won't get that wish, but he got some satisfaction in his return to Globe Life Park in Arlington on Tuesday night. Not only did Kinsler's Tigers come away with a convincing 8-2 win, he received a mostly favorable greeting from the fans, and then went on to contribute a solo home run in his first at-bat against Colby Lewis.
It was pretty much a no doubt blast off the bat, so a confident Kinsler added to the moment by turning to the Rangers' dugout in his first few steps out of the batter's box and giving his former teammates a little wave to say hello.
There wasn't much of a reaction from the Rangers dugout to Kinsler's antics and there was no retaliation later in the game despite the lopsided score. In today's overly sensitive baseball world, that's actually notable.
It didn't go unnoticed though. At least not by Lewis.
''I love Kins, I'm just a little bit disappointed,'' Lewis said.
As for Kinsler, he couldn't stop smiling as he rounded the bases. He got a few months worth of frustration out with that swing, and although he insists it's nothing personal against his former teammates and coaches and even Rangers fans, he really seemed to enjoy letting them know he was back.
''It was nothing personal at all. I was just saying 'Hi','' Kinsler said, insisting he was motioning to no one in particular. ''I mean, it was my return home, and get lucky enough to square one up like that and have it go over the fence, it was a good feeling. I was just having fun.''
Hey, if you're going to troll your former teammates, you might as well own it. Kinsler certainly earned the right with that blast.
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