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03/25/2006 7:32 PM ET
Kinsler earns Rangers' second base job
Tucson native gets news while playing in hometown
Ian Kinsler was officially named the Rangers' starting second baseman this year.  (Charlie Riedel/AP)

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TUCSON, Ariz. -- Rookie Ian Kinsler has won the job as the Rangers' starting second baseman, manager Buck Showalter said.

Showalter made the announcement Saturday after the Rangers' 3-2 loss to the Colorado Rockies at Hi Corbett Field. Kinsler is from Tucson and was told by Showalter after the game that he would be out there against Curt Schilling and the Boston Red Sox on April 3 at Ameriquest Field in Arlington.

Showalter informed Mark DeRosa of the decision earlier in the week.

"It's time to get that out there and let (Ian) get settled mentally," Showalter said. "We're real proud of him and Mark. We feel comfortable with both out there."

Kinsler said he was glad to get the news Saturday rather than waiting in suspense until the end of spring.

"I'm happy to hear it in Tucson, I'm sure he planned it that way," Kinsler said. "You couldn't ask for a better organization, the way they moved me along and have confidence in me. I want to make sure I stay there as long as possible. This is just one step."

After going 0-for-4 Saturday, Kinsler is hitting .250 this spring with four home runs and eight RBIs in 42 at-bats. He has made just one error.

"He's been consistent," Showalter said. "I talked to him for a half-hour at the [January] minicamp and told him what he needs to do. He's a confident young man, but he wears it on the inside. He has a lot of respect for this level of competition.

"We wanted to see how he handled himself defensively and his feel for the rest of the club, and he passed the test on both."

Kinsler had a couple of people he wanted to tell: his fiancee, Tess, and White Sox rookie center fielder Brian Anderson. Kinsler and Anderson were teammates at Tucson's Canyon del Oro High. Now they are competing for the same award.

"I just need to be consistent," Kinsler said. "I expect there will be some growing pains. I have lofty goals, but I also have to stay grounded."

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.