Kinsler a Hit in MLB
"It was cold," remembered Kinsler. "I wasn't used to that, coming from Arizona, the weather. I think we played a series against Youngstown State. It was snowing during the game, so that was a first for me."
In the big leagues, Kinsler's had more firsts, including his first home run and his first trip to the disabled list.
"Watching them win, I wanted to be in the middle of it," he admitted. "It was definitely a frustrating time, but I'm glad to be back."
And, in his first game back, there was another first: a two-homer game. It's only Kinsler's rookie season, but he's already popular. Several fans in the stands at Kansas City wore his number 5 jersey.
"The thing I love, too, is our veteran players have taken to him because he's so unassuming, but has a lot of respect for the level he's trying to play at," said Texas Manager Buck Showalter.
Kinsler hit over .300 with 6 homers and 45 RBIs as a shortstop for MU's 2003 team, which he led to the NCAA regionals for the first time since 1996.
"Ever since then, they've been to a regional every year and now a Super Regional this season," Kinsler said. "We're pretty excited about that and it's something that my class if very proud of."
The rookie big leaguer shot through the minors and is already a major reason the Rangers are in first place in the American League West.
"I think the last thing you want to do to Ian is tell him he can't do something," Showalter said. "He's going to prove you wrong. There's not much not to like. He's a lot of fun to be around."
"It's different from every baseball experience I've had in my life," Kinsler said. "It's something special and it's probably more than I dreamed of and I'm enjoying it."