Kinsler: Some ESPN remarks taken 'out of context'
Tigers second baseman's comments in The Magazine critical of Rangers GM
LAKELAND, Fla. -- Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler said Tuesday that some of his comments in an ESPN The Magazine story in which he criticized Rangers general manager Jon Daniels were taken out of context, but he did not deny making several inflammatory remarks about his former club.
In the story, published online Tuesday morning, Kinsler is quoted as calling Daniels, who traded Kinsler to the Tigers this offseason, a "sleazeball." Kinsler is also quoted in the story as saying he hopes the Rangers go 0-162 this season.
"There's not much to say about it. It's written. It's out there. I'm not happy about it," Kinsler said Tuesday in front of his locker at Joker Marchant Stadium. "The story was written for drama and taken a little out of context, but it is what it is, and I really don't have anything else to say besides that."
Kinsler said he felt the final version of the article, which will run in the magazine's "Conspiracy Issue," was more dramatic than he expected. He hasn't spoken to anyone with the Rangers since the story was published and didn't plan to reach out to Daniels.
"There's no reason to. He's a grown man," said Kinsler, who was traded this offseason for Prince Fielder. "I think he's intelligent enough and he's had enough conversations with me to understand where I stand. That's really it.
"I understand it was directed at the GM, there were some things directed at the GM. But as far as my teammates and fans, there's nothing negative to say about that, and I think the quotes taken about the general manager were taken a little out of context. I think you guys will get to know me a little bit better than that and understand that, but right now, it is what it is."
Asked if the "0-162" comment was simply a matter of being competitive, Kinsler responded, "It's just a matter of telling a joke, to be honest with you.
"I thought that was a little ridiculous. It seems a little childish," Kinsler added, when asked about his "sleazeball" comment. "But that's what's written, and there's nothing really I can say to reverse that or reverse people's opinions. It is what it is, and that's basically it."
Kinsler also reportedly didn't approve of the Rangers trading veteran infielder Michael Young to the Phillies in 2013, nor did he like that he was expected to become a more active clubhouse leader in Young's absence.
"I was bogged down," Kinsler said, according to ESPN. "They wanted me to lead these young players, teach them the way to compete, when the only thing I should be worried about is how I'm performing in the game."
When he reported to Spring Training on Feb. 16, Kinsler said he was excited to join the Tigers after spending his career to that point with the Rangers.
"I didn't feel betrayed," Kinsler said at the time. "To leave behind what I know, as far as the ins and outs of the whole organization, is honestly refreshing. To come to a place where I don't have to worry about certain moves or trades or all the stuff that goes into baseball that I hear, just through relationships that I've developed over the years, I don't have to worry about that anymore. I can just come here and play ball."
Adam Berry is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry. MLB.com reporter Alden Gonzalez contributed to this report. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.