SURPRISE, Ariz. (AP) -The Texas Rangers locked up the middle of their infield through 2013.
The Rangers and second baseman Ian Kinsler agreed Tuesday on a five-year, $22 million contract with a club option valued at $10 million for the 2013 season. If the Rangers decline the option, Kinsler would get a $500,000 buyout.
The deal comes about a year after the Rangers signed All-Star shortstop Michael Young to a five-year, $80 million extension.
Young and Kinsler have been paired since Kinsler won the job at second in spring training two years ago. He singled off Boston's Curt Schilling in his first major-league at-bat and was hitting .476 when he dislocated his left thumb eight days later.
The 24-year-old Kinsler finished 2006 at .286 with 14 home runs and 55 RBIs and led AL rookies with 27 doubles. His batting average dropped to .263 last season, but he had 20 home runs and 23 steals. He was one of six AL players with at least 20 homers and 20 steals.
A 17th-round pick out of Missouri in 2003, Kinsler signed with the Rangers after getting drafted twice by Arizona without agreeing to a contract. He won two Arizona high school championships in suburban Tucson.
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